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Bv J. H. BATES, PH.M. 


Copyright by 



Eaton & Mains Press, 
150 Fifth Avenue, New York. 

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"Tbaoheb, we want a sign from yow," Thus 
the Pharisees set up their own Messianic stand- 
ard. Casting out demons was to them a sign 
from helL If he was the Messiah, they demanded 
a sign in the heavens. They had no use for 
truth that cut the cords of the mind, nor for 
sinlessness, nor for potent holiness, nor for love 
that reconciled the soul to God. He must shake 
the heavens with his power and fill them with 
his glory to authenticate his divine mission. 
Jesus ''sighed in his spirit,'' and called them 
an adulterous and unbelieving generation. 

Thus it has ever been — ^no "sign" within the 
circle of human life, no revelation of God in the 
natural working of the mind, no light of love 
transforming the spirit that shows us the face of 
Jesus Christ, has silenced the demand for prodi- 
gies of divine power. There must be some ex- 
ternal manifestation of omnipotence, crushing 
through all natural law, to convince us that God 
is still aliva Hence natural phenomena have 

often been interpreted as miraculous, and the 



Church for ages before the Reformation supplied 
the faithful with relics and charms and magic to 
maintain the " faith once delivered to the saints." 
The Protestant world, while rejecting relics, has 
often resorted to faith cure in its various forms 
as a substitute for Romish fetichea When we 
insist that normal cures are proof that the salva- 
tion of Christ has its physical beneficence as well 
as its spiritual, that it corrects all human life, still 
the cry is set up for sudden violent displays of 
supernatural power, to the exclusion of the grad- 
ual processes of recovery which are in harmony 
with natura The question may very justly be 
raised. Did God establish nature for the sole pur- 
pose of revealing himself by violating its order, 
or has he performed miracles that we might know 
him as the Lord of nature, the miracles being 
only a violation of "superficial uniformity in the 
interest of deeper law ? " * 

Christian Science is a form of faith cure so 
extreme that it has been invariably criticised as 
neither Christian nor scientific. It certainly is 
not in harmony with the fundamental truths of 
Christianity, and it wages ceaseless conflict with 

* Gore, IneamaHon of the Son of Ood^ p. 60. 



the spirit and results of all approved scienca 
Hence, we cannot but regard the name as mis- 
leading and without excuse. To this " science "\ 
the laws of health are but a delusion and a snare ; 
the study of physiology and hygiene cultivates 
mortal mind with all its repulsive offspring; mat- 
ter is nothing; even the body is an unreality 
and false belief ; sensation is an illusion because 
nerves cannot feel ; all else is but a reflection of 
God, who is the only reality. Just what MrsT 
Eddy means by reality she nowhere makes clear, 

j It is hard to imagine the denial of the actual ex- 

: istence of material things on the part of one who 
eats with a relish, builds fires against the winter's 

: cold, walks through the open doors instead of 
through the closed windows, and treats our pres- 

' ent environment exactly as others treat it It is 
much easier to suppose that by reality is meant 
enduring existence, which the scientist ascribes to 
God alone; but this would hardly account for 
the rejection of the conditions of our present life 
as whoUy a "false belief of mortal mind." Her 
denial of the reality of the world of sense and ex- 
perience is not only categorical, but it is also 

woven into the entire texture of her theory of 



healtli, and with it her scheme must stand or 

This little book is an investigation of themes 
brought again to the surface by Christian Science. 
Statements of Christian doctrine will be found 
side by side with the principles of Mrs. Eddy's 
scheme. Truth has a self-evidencing power; it 
goes home to the mind with a native energy ; it 
never returns to God void. I have therefore 
shunned all labored polemics while conducting 
this discussion in the interest of truth. 

Controversy in these pages, however, is sub- 
sidiary to the search for health in the profound- 
est sense — ^health pervading the whole sphere of 
life ; indeed, it cannot long continue anything less. 
A diseased imagination is inimical to a healthy 
stomach. Dyspepsia is a relentless enemy of a 
sound mind. Body and mind are most intimately 
related. We no longer divide man into com- 
partments like a steamship. He is a unity with 
whom it cannot be well in any imaginary depart- 
ment of his being and ill with him in any other. 
Life is one, and the infraction of it at any point 
mars its harmony throughout It is as essential 

that we should think clearly and love religiously 



to be well in the best sense as that we should 
have a good digestion. The true physician is not 
a mere drug doctor. He who treats the sick 
must take into account psychic and ethical forces 
as well as chemical. Half the dissatisfaction 
with doctors arises from their obloquy to spirit- 
ual facts. They treat a fraction of a man, not his 
integral being. But this class of physicians is 
constantly diminishing as the knowledge of man 
increases. The study of the relation of mind and 
body is bringing new factors of health into view 
which the doctors are quick to appreciate. A 
new science of therapeutics will soon incorpo- 
rate these psychic facts and forces, and once more 
the physician will find his nearest and truest 
coadjutor in the minister of the Gospel In the 
meantime the laity, holding fast its faith in true 
science, may well avoid "the profane pratings 
and oppositions of falsely-named knowledge — 
which some professing concerning the faith have 
missed the mark I " * (1 Tim. vi, 20.) 

> See Greek text, W. and H. 




I. Thb Imhanbncb of God 11 

n. Life 21 

ni. Thb Philosophy of Chkistian Science 85 

I. **Matter is Nothing" 37 

n. Tlie Mortal Mind 44 

in. God 48 

ly. Fundamental Principles. 55 

V. Science 68 

VI. Evil 64 

Vn. Proof Texts 75 

rV. The Cubes 89 

Christianity and Health 121 




The Immanence of God 





The Immanence of God 

WHAT we think about God will determine 
all other thought The universe from 
the view-point of pantheism or of deism is not 
the same universe that is seen from the view- 
point of Christian theism. To the pantheist there 
is nothing but God ; to the deist matter is a reality 
moved by second causes, from which God is far 
separated; to the Christian theist God is more 
than the sum of all things, but he is very inti- 
mately present with all things, so that all energy 
is an immediate manifestation of God. 

A true conception of God can be derived from 
neither pantheism nor deism alone. Pantheism 
dishonors the personality ; deism, the omnipres- 
ence of God ; to the one he is identified with the 
universe; to the other he is distinct from all 
things, and outside the world he has created; 

each has its lessons, deism emphasizing the 



Christian Science and its Problems 

divine transcendence ; pantheism, the divine im- 

It is not surprising that a tinge of deism colors 
the average Christian thought of God to-day. In 
the third century Latin Christianity broke away 
from the more rational theism of the Alexandrian 
school, and began the development of a system 
of anthropomorphism which has very largely 
ruled theology up to a very recent time. God 
was supposed to be too exalted in his perfections 
to come into immediate touch with human life; 
hence a series of intermediaries — virgin, saints, 
pope, and priests — was placed between God and 
the soul. Theories of atonement and whole sys- 
tems of theology were built on this conception, 
from which Christian Science is a symptom of a 
somewhat wholesome revulsion. 

The thought of the Alexandrian school was 
more closely in keeping with God's self-disclo- 
sure as recorded in both the Old and the New 
Testament Scriptures. Clement of Alexandria 
said that God is in all human life ; that he an- 
ticipated Christ and prepared for him through 
Greek philosophy, as well as through Jewish 
prophets ; he was incarnated in Christ and through 
him in the whole human race ; Christ had been 
in the world before he came in the flesh to pre- 
pare it for his visible advent ; he was organically 

related to the human soul, hence " the image of 


The Immanence of God 

God in man is a spiritual endowment of human- 
ity which is capable of expressing the inmost 
essence or character of God ; " ** the image of God 
in every man constitutes the warrant for believing 
that he may rise from the possibility into the 
actuality, that the image may develop into a living 
and speaking resemblance." The indwelling 
Deity, in Clement's view, is the educator of the 
race, the end of whose educational discipline is 

The biblical conception of God gave strong 
warrant to these views. Had not the psalmist 
said: ** Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or 
whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I as- 
cend up into heaven, thou art there : if I make 
my bed in Sheol, behold, thou art thera If I 
take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the 
uttermost parts of the sea ; even there shall thy 
hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me." 
Had not Isaiah declared, " We are the clay and 
thou art the potter?" and Jeremiah, "Am la 
God at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God afar 
off ? Do not I fill heaven and earth ? saith the 
Lord? " And did not St John affirm, " In the be- 
ginning was the Word, . . . without him was 
not anything made that was made. His life is 
the light of men . . . that lighteth every man 

1 C<nUinuUy of Christian Thought^ p. 48. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

that Cometh into the world ? " St Paul also says, 
" In him we live, and move, and have our being ; " 
and Christ taught the same great truth in his 
prayer, "That they all may be one, . . . even 
as we are one, ... I in them and thou in me, 
that they may be made perfect in one." 

Science has again brought into prominence the 
doctrine of the divine immanence. While it was 
possible to conceive of the world as a fabricated 
product at a particular period of time, it was also 
possible to conceive of God as a great mechanic, 
a carpenter, or a clock-builder, standing utterly 
aloof from his work; but the discovery that 
creation is a continuous process was attended by 
the self -revelation of the immanent God. Energy 
in its protean forms, force in its persistence, would 
admit of no definition that left God out The 
only force we know in the last analysis is will ; 
hence, if matter addresses us only through force, 
when we are dealing with matter we are dealing 
with the immanent God. 

Philosophy teaches us to seek the unity of the 
world in God. Some form of monism, or the 
effort to reduce the world to a consistent unitary 
conception, has been almost universally enter- 
tained by philosophic thought A fundamental 
pluralism is offensive to the reason. Interaction, 
law, system, demand a unitary being which posits 

and maintains them in their mutual relations. 


The Immanence of God 

"Is this one unmanent or transcendent?" asks 
Professor Bowna We might reply by asking 
for a definition of the terms. It would be ab- 
surd to take them spatially, as if immanent meant 
inside and transcendent outside ; a fancy, how- 
ever, which seems to underlie not a few utterances 
on this subject The one cannot be conceived as 
• the sum of the many, nor as the stuff out of which 
the many are made; neither does it depend on 
the many, but, conversely, the many depend on 
it In this sense the one is transcendent Again, 
the many are not spatially outside the one, nor a 
pendulous appendage of the one ; but the one is 
the ever-present power in and through which the 
many exist In this sense the one is immanent 
The alleged impossibility of transcending the uni- 
verse is another form of the same verbalism. In 
the sense defined we must transcend it; in any 
other sense there is no need of transcending it 
In modern thought substantiality has been re- 
placed or defined by causality. A world sub- 
stance, as dintinguished from a world cause, is a 
product of the imagination which vanishes before 
criticism. For the explanation of the system we 
need a cause which shall not be this, that, or the 
other thing, but an omnipresent agent by which 
all things exist* 

* PhUotophy of TJmtm^ pp. 69, 60. 
(2) 17 

Christian Science and its Problems 

There is a happy accordance between this con- 
clusion of philosophy and modern theology. The 
Deity of Latin theology is an otiose God — idle, 
at ease, contemplating his own glory. It is true 
that there are flashes of the divine immanence in 
St Augustine and in many of his successors, but 
the tendency was to separate God from his world. 
On the other hand, present-day theology finds 
God in his world. Thus Dr. Charles Hodge says : 
/"God fills immensity with his presence. His 
omnipresence is the infinitude of his being, viewed 
in relation to his creatures. He is equally present 
with all his creatures, at all times and all places. 
He is not far from any one of us. . . . Nor is 
this omnipresence to be understood as a mere 
presence in knowledge and power. It is an omni- 
presence of the divine essence. Otherwise the 
essence of God would be limited." * The words 
of Dr. Fairbaim are not less explicit: "If we be- 
lieve in a living God, we surely believe in a God 
who lives; but God does not live unless he 
is every moment and in every atom as active 
and as much present as he was in the very hour 
and article of creation." ' Professor Bruce, in his 
Apologetics^ says : " To Christian faith the world 
is not a machine to which God stands related as 
an artisan, with which, the more it approaches 

* Hodge's Theology y vol. i, p. 888. 

' Place of Christ in Modem Theology, p. 417. 


The Immanence of God 

perfection, the less he has to do. It is rather an 
organism of which God is, as it were, the living 
soul." An effective putting of the doctrine will 
be found in Liux Mundi: "Slowly but surely 
that theory of the world (the deistical) has been 
. undermined. The one absolutely impossible 
conception of God, in the present day, is that 
which represents him as an occasional visitor. 
Science has pushed the deist's God farther and 
farther away, and at the moment when it seemed 
as if he would be thrust out all together Darwin- 
ism appeared, and under the disguise of a foe 
did the work of a friend. It has conferred upon 
philosophy and religion an inestimable benefit by 
showing us that we must choose between two al- 
ternatives. Either God is everywhere present in 
nature or he is nowhere. He cannot be here and 
not there. He cannot delegate his power to 
demigods called 'second causes.* In nature 
everything must be his work or nothing. We 
must frankly return to the Christian view of di- 
rect divine agency, the immanence of divine 
power in nature from end to end, the belief in a 
God in whom not only we, but all things, have 
their being, or we must banish him altogether. 
It seems as if, in the providence of God, the mis- 
sion of modem science was to bring home to our 
unmetaphysical ways of thinking the great truth 

of the divine immanence in creation, which is not 



Christian Science and its Problems 

less essential to the Christian idea of God than to 
a philosophical view of nature. And it comes to 
us almost like a new truth, which we cannot at 
once fit in with the old." * 

It is important that we should understand the 
position of modem theology with regard to this 
fundamental doctrine. It has an important bear- 
ing on the development of a sound theory of life 
and health, and we shall see as we proceed how 
Christian Science diverges from it and loses sight 
of a personal God. 

> Liiz Mtmdif p. 82. 






^KfEITHER sickness nor death can be predi- 
J cated of God, and if we may rely upon the 
analogy of nature, where variations from the 
parental form attain " survival values," and thus 
acquire a kind of immortality, we also may an- 
ticipate a time when we shall attain a deathless 
state. This is characteristic of nature's move- 
ment toward perfection — what is worthy to en- 
dure survives, and thus the whole life is exalted 
by the improvement of its individual factors. 

Eternal life proceeds from a perfect corre-^ 
spondence between the soul and God. Death in 
nature is not annihilation ; it is the gateway to life. 
This is the lesson of the tiny cell, the most primi- 
tive form of life, and it is a lesson constantly re- 
peated in nature as we ascend the scale of being 
up to man. But at this point death acquires a 
moral function. What had been heretofore a 
natural force is appropriated by the moral order, 
and may now operate either as a blessing or as a 
curse. By man's abuse of life death clothes it- 
self with terrors, and acquires a kind of punitive 
character. This shall all pass away when man has 
entered into perfect correspondence with God. 

True, death may still have a place and function 


Christian Science and its Problems 

as the means of "disentangling this body, in 
which the old order ends, from the spiritual, in 
which the new order begins," but no longer will 
its face be clothed with horrors. 

Man was made for life, and death is his servant 
The whole movement of life from the beginning 
was toward a consummation in man. The ap- 
pearance of a living cell in the process of crea- 
tion, while it was a transformation of a startling 
character, was no violent break with nature. To 
it the nebulous mists looked forward with pro- 
phetic anticipation. The swiriing fire-cloud 
began the preparation for it Suns spread their 
dazzling beams ; light gleamed on igneous rocks ; 
wind and wave swept shore and forest; the 
mineral world bedecked itself with jewels; the 
mountains gathered their provident stores of fuel ; 
and the subtle chemistries of nature made ready 
for the great event — ^the birth of a living cell 

But how shall we account for all this stir of 
preparation? Who gave this prophetic power to 
what we call the azoic world ? And from whence 
came motion, that set the atoms dancing among 
themselves, that drove the winds from their fast- 
nesses, that pulsed the tides of the great deep ? 
Surely there was life here, though it veiled itself 
in all the forms of matter. There was life before 
the cell — a foreseeing, purposing, loving, and om- 

y nipotent life. 



"In the beginning," says Genesis, "the Spirit 
of God moved upon the face of the waters." 
Thenceforth the earth was no inanimate clod. 
The dry land appeared, vegetation, the inhabit- 
ants of land and water, and finally man, the con- 
summation of creation. God made it alL But 
what was the method of creation ? Genesis has 
no answer, save that it emphasizes the order and 
the divine origin of the sublime procesa 

Science carries us back to a microscopic cell, 
which it recognizes as the starting point of man. 
Here in the amoeba he begins his race, his en- 
dowments, his acquisitions. Here he develops 
digestive power and the beginning of nerve tis- 
sue. Worms start the construction of his body 
in compact, definite form ; jSshes supply the spinal 
column, insects and vertebrates contribute the 
brain, and man lifts up his head the true Greek 
anthropos. But the mystery of this marvelous 
evolution grows deeper and darker until we rec- 
ognize the inmian ence o f God. The unfolding 
of the most rudimentary forms of life was a dis- 
closure of God, who was still further revealed in 
each ascending stage until his image appeared in 

There was then no gulf in nature between the 
first cell and its antecedents or consequents ; it 
was the outcome of the world that preceded it, 
the parent of the world that followed. It, too, 


Christian Science and its Problems 

was prophetic. It looked forward to higher 
unfoldings until it consummated in man. From 
the first movement of the macrocosm to the birth 
of the self-determining, godlike human mind 
there was a continuous manifestation of life, 
and man himself is its highest revelation. Like 
it, of it, in a sense, and yet apart from it, he still 
refreshes the streams of his life from God, whose 
presence has attended his existence in every form, 
and with whom he enters now into the most ex- 
alted relationship. 

Thus we are a part of the universal life, from 
which we seek to separate ourselves by artificial 
partitions. It is indeed hard for us to enter into 
the abounding life of nature ; we have given up 
so large a part of this world to dead matter and 
cold, blind force. To uncritical thought every- 
thing is lifeless save the scattered flora and fauna 
that appear upon earth's surface. The move- 
ments of nature are to us like the grinding of a 
great machine ; every part stamped out like the 
wheels of a modem watch, impelled by " second 
causes," but God is not in it. This is the phenom- 
enal world, beyond which we never think. We 
live upon the superficial crust of things. The 
real world lies beyond, and can be entered only 
by the mind. This is the occult, the noumenal 
world, to which our minds are directed by birth 

and death, by the instincts of our spiritual life, 



and by all the lessons of religion. Once haying 
passed the sphere of our own misconceptions and 
deformed creations, we find ourselves in the 
kingdom of life. Here there is no death. There 
is change, there is tropical movement, there is 
exuviation of the old things, but there is no ces- 
sation nor diminution of life itself. 

We should have faith in life. Faith is the 
bond of union with God and is one of the earliest 
and most radical of soul powers. It is the power 
of the integral soul to see, the exercise of reason 
in the larger sense. It is knowledge, we may say, 
the highest knowledge, making constantly real to 
the mind what is not seen by the eye. The 
children of the forest witnessed to the earliest 
powers of faith. They never doubted a spiritual 
presence behind the forms of natura With- 
out questioning they accepted the power of 
invisible agencies over life. With them it was 
true that the instincts and intuitions of the soul 
exercised a much larger influence than the dis- 
cursive reason. All the older religions bear wit- 
ness to this fact While Adam participated in 
the simplicity of life without questioning it was 
well with him, but when he sought to solve the 
mystery of good and evil, to make a world for 
himself, he was placed without the gates of para- 
dise, and flaming cherubim forbade his return. 

He had entered the world of artificiality ; he was 


Christian Science and its Problems 

separated from life. The early history of the 
Aryans is a repetition of the same fact Theirs 
was a submission to the simplicity of nature, to 
the current of its deepest life. Witness the fol- 
lowing Orphic hymn : 

" Render us always flourishing, always happy, 
O, household fire ! Thou who art eternal, beauti- 
ful, always young, thou who nourishest, thou who 
art rich, receive our offerings with good will and 
give us in return the happiness and health which 
are so sweet" 

The spirit of all this simple faith was finally 
paralyzed by the addition of religious rites. The 
Greeks enjoyed at first much of the Aryan sim- 
plicity and confident trust in nature, but each 
addition to their mythology, each new sect that 
sprang up, diverted the Greek life more and more 
from the channels of nature into artificial human 
trenches. The same course marks the early re- 
ligious history of Egypt and Assyria. The hu- 
manly devised scheme of life covers up and 
stifles the soul. The whole course of Christian 
history is a remarkable illustration of this tend- 
ency. The art of Christ has been distorted and 
obscured by the artifice of the Church. Creeds, 
devised with ever so good an intent, and per- 
forming no little service in their way, have, 
nevertheless, hidden the simplicity that is in 

Christ Weary of the problems of metaphysical 




theology, of a benumbing scholasticism, we wel- 
come the call of the age that turns us back again 
to the archetypal, historical, and immanent 
Christ Not that we shall never come to see 
truth again in these integumentary doctrines 
which we now seek to strip off ; not for a more 
confined view, but for keener insight and broader 
comprehension of religious truth, we now turn 
back for more intimate communion with the 
Christ of the ages. Thus the lesson is repeated ; 
we must have faith — faith that sees and realizes 
the enduring truth; faith in the unseen, in both^ 
the universe without and that within ourselves, 
in nature ; for with all our science we have not 
changed it ; in the inscrutable forces that roll on 
without reck of time and that seek to carry us 
with them ; in life, in God. 

Shall we think without system? Surely not, 
for we can see system everywhere in divinely 
ordained nature. What is the earth but a sys- 
tem? What is man but a system? And so is 
every man. We are a part of a great system 
" which has skeleton and framework as well as 
blood and nerves ; which has actions and reac- 
tions, mechanical as well as chemical ; which has 
measures and compensations and coordinations 
and times and seasons, and whose gravities re- 
veal its subtle attractions. This is the life which 

God has himself ordained, a life organic and 


Christian Science and its Problems 

structural, whicli has system — ^nay, a series of 
systems — not only consistent in space, but suc- 
cessive in time." ' 

But the system must be flexible and subordi- 
nate to the life which it infolds. It must be 
capable of mutation even to submergence in a 
higher system. It is not system, it is not creed, 
jper se, that has been the extinction of life, but 
rather the conservation of system as something 
of prime importance. Even the holy temple of 
the Jews became a godless structure when it 
came to be guarded by priests. That is a mis- 
taken faith that clutches the material symbol 
instead of the thing symbolized. There is a 
somewhat, real and undiminishing, beyond all 
our human modes of expressing it, that is the 
true object of faith. It is God, and in him is 
abounding life in which by faith we participate, 
and that is the antithesis of disease. 

It is mistrust and fear that have diseased us, 
and that largely maintain that disharmony from 
which proceed all our human ills. What is there 
of life to him who goes forth into God*s world with 
a doubting heart? To such a one there is no 
peace with himself, no peace with man, with na- 
ture, nor with God. And more, he is a corrupter 
of men; he infests the community with his 

> God in His World, p. 68. 


deadly virus. Like an escaped patient of the 
pesthouse, he carries infection in his toucL In- 
deed, some such a leper must have stalked abroad 
through all communities, for how widespread is 
this leprosy of unbelief I How dark is the 
shadow it casts on every face we meet I With 
what a cuirass it loads down every man who goes 
forth into his self-imposed warfare! Could we 
expect health in such a world? It was a very 
ancient disciple of jEsculapius that advised cheer- 
fulness as a cure for sickness. No intelligent 
disciple of any modem school of medicine has 
ever discountenanced his prescription. But how 
shall cheerfulness abound without faith ? Is it 
the disciple of pessimism who has turned to be 
the apostle of hope? Surely faith in life is the 
wellspring of hope, of aspiration, and endeavor. 
He who enjoys the divine serenity of faith has 
entered on the way of health, and let him ever 
hold before his mind these words: Now abide 
these four, faith, hope, love, and cheerfulness. 

Faith, again, gives us a true insight that saves 
us from the misleading of unsophisticated reason. 
Disease and death have a superficial appearance 
of terror, but faith sees that when they are not 
self-imposed they are not alien to life. If disease 
is only the natural integument of death, then it 
involves the whole process of life. We cannot 
move the body without the occurrence of both 

Christian Science and its Problems 

death and birth in the muscular tissua Every 
thought that goes burning through the brain is 
attended by death. It was death that ushered 
us into the world, and at each new stage of our 
progress the old and mortal coil has been shuffled 
off. Even before man appeared on the globe 
the preparation for his coming involved the dis- 
solution of a countless series of organisms, and 
even the inorganic world for the same purpose 
produced and destroyed multitudes of beautiful 
forms. Death is not annihilation ; to the eye of 
faith it is only the occultation of life, which reap- 
pears fresh and glorious. The entire future of 
man in all worlds is dependent on death — the 
angel of life. 

Faith brings us close to nature without the 
imposition of our own interpretation of its mean- 
ing. Dogmatism is averse to lifa It is the at- 
tempt to put life in a mold, to measure it by the 
conceits of the individual mind. It is the proc- 
ess by which each little mind makes a world for 
itself. Even the world that we call supernatural 
is too often a product of the human mind. Such 
perversions do not change nature, they only di- 
vert us still more from truth with what is unreal 
A search in the simplicity of childhood for the 
true meaning of nature is healthful and life-giv- 
ing. What, then, must be the consequence when 

we paint nature with the false colors of our own 



minA It is complacency in the perversion of 
nature that explains the use of certain drugs. 
Alcohol, morphine, cocaine, remove their vic- 
tims as far as possible from the world of reality, 
and hasten a state of moritura. They are 
danger signals warning us to cast off every ves- 
tige of simulation, and to accept God's world as 
he made it 

All willful separation from nature is sin, be- 
cause nature is one with our highest life. The 
movement toward spiritual perfection — indeed, 
toward all perfection — is profoundly natural It 
is sinful to turn the balance of choice toward an 
inferior grade of life ; it is a rupture with the im- 
manent God, who is vitally one with all the 
genetic processes of nature, and is as necessary to 
man as to the crystal or the flower. To break with 
God is to cut the cords of life ; to deny him is to 
lose the poise of soul. Sin is ethical disease, the 
root of all disease. Sin and disease are stern 
facts in this world, and either presents a subject 
too serious to be treated by magic. The image 
of God in man foretells possible rupture and con- 
flict with the divine Spirit Man is so complete 
in his structure, so distinct in his personality, 
that it is possible for him to resist even God. 
This is a luminous fact in human consciousness. 
No jugglery will ever deprive man of the convic- 
tion that he is the cause of the sin and moral evil 
(8) 88 

Christian Science and its Problems 

of the world. Keturning to God again, like a 
wandering prodigal, drinking once more from the 
fountain of life, will be to mind and body re-crea- 
tive and medicinal. 

So far we have been considering the Christian 
view of God and life; Christian Science takes 
another view. Let us now inquire to what extent 

it is a perversion of the trutL 



The Philosophy of Christian 

The Philosophy of Christian Science 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

I. '* Matter is Nothing." 

THEKE is an inside and an outside to every- 
thing, and knowledge requires not only eye- 
sight, but insight The heavens spread before 
the eyes are not the astronomical heavens ; they 
are only the raw material which the astronomer 
has mentally construed and interpreted. Thus 
in all the forms of matter the senses are first ad- 
dressed, and then the mind draws its own infer- 
ences from the sense perceptions. But neither 
science nor philosophy denies anything which the 
senses give. What is discovered by sense is real, 
but it is not the whole of reality ; it is the foun- 
dation on which rational thought builds up its 
system of reality. "However real the outer 
world may be, the mind can grasp that world only 

through the conception it forms of it" * 

The concern oi the mind is to find what is 

called the "universal predicates of the real in 

thought — that is, those predicates which all 

thinkers affirm under the same circumstances." 

This is what Ferrier calls " the common to all," 

and not merely "the special to me." 

* For a luminous statement of this truth see James's Psychology^ 

vol. ii, p. 636. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

The following statements concerning the " noth- 
ingness of matter " are taken from Science and 
Health, They fairly represent Mrs. Eddy's posi- 

"The realm of the real is spiritual. The 
opposite of spirit is matter, and the opposite of the 
real is the unreal, or material. Matter is an error 
of statement This error in the premise leads to 
errors in the conclusion, in every statement into 
which it enters. Nothing we can say or believe 
regarding matter is true, except that matter is 
unreal, and is therefore a belief, which has its be- 
ginning and ending " (p. 173). 

*^ Not a glimpse or manifestation of spirit is 
obtainable through matter " (p. 66). 

" The theories that I combat are these : (1) 
that all is matter ; (2) that matter originates in 
mind, and is as real as mind, possessing intelli- 
gence and life. The first theory, that matter is 
everything, is quite as reasonable as the second, 
that mind and matter coexist and cooperate. 
One only of the following statements can be true : 
(1) that everything is matter ; (2) that everything 
is mind. Which one is it? " (p. 166.) 

Mrs. Eddy's conception of matter has very little 
affinity with idealism, whether it be a true ideal- 
ism that has a deep and genuine respect for the 
natural order and for experience, or with a sub- 
jective idealism like that of Fichte. With him 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

matter was the condition of our common tasks, 
something that each one creates for himself, but 
also in common with others. It is a real product 
of the mind, although not real in itself. With- 
out it we dream; we are delirious because we 
cannot work in common, and hence we cannot be 
effectively righteous. For this reason some have 
thought that Fichte's system might better be 
called *^ ethical idealism in its extremest expres- 
sion." But it will be noted that, while Fichte in- 
sists on the necessity of a sense world as a com- 
mon mental creation, the condition of ethical 
activity, Mrs. Eddy denies the reality of such a 
world, and describes it as a delusive fiction, a 
product of mortal mind. 

There is, again, a wide divergence between her 
teachings and those of Spinoza, who calls the ma- 
terial world body, or bodily substance, and the 
inner world of thought thinking substance, 
or mind. These two worlds were to him *' equally 
real, equally revelations of the one absolute truth, 
equally divine, equally full of God." 

Berkeley has been charged with a philosophical 
idealism that denied the reality of matter, and of 
him Byron wrote : 

** When Bishop Berkeley said there is no matter 
It was no matter what he said ; " 

and yet the famous idealist contended only for the 

doctrine that matter has no reality apart from mind. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

Thus it appears that when Mrs. Eddy asserts 
that " matter is nothing " she stands alone. Her 
dictum arises from the exigencies of her scheme 
of mental healing. Matter is denied reality, not 
because reason requires the denial, but because 
disease and sickness are supposed to inhere in 
matter, or in the mental conception of it, and 
with the disappearance of the one the other, also, 
is banished. 

1 When Christian Science affirms that matter is 
nothing it denies a predicate of thought of uni- 
• versal validity. The reality of matter is not solely 
a deliverance of sense ; it is also a determination 
of the mind. The senses may give an imperfect 
or superficial report of matter, but when the mind 
interprets that report it determines for us the 
highest possible reality of matter. It therefore 
cannot be affirmed that objective matter is " a 
sham, a mockery, an illusion, or even a lie ; it is 
a revelation." 

Philosophers now generally agree that matter 

cannot be defined as substance in the sense of 

self-existence. God only is substance. Hence 

the theory that atoms are discrete entities, which 

underlies the materialistic view of the universe, 

is gradually giving way to the energistic theory 

which speaks of matter in the terms of energy. 

It is true there is no passive matter in itself ; nor 

is it possible to conceive of force in itself as 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

separate from its activity. Matter is a manifesta- 
tion of forca Thus Professor Ostwald, of Leip- 
sic, says:' "The supposition that all natural 
phenomena can be traced back primarily to 
mechanical factors cannot even be designa- 
ted as an available working hypothesis." " The 
predicate of reality can be applied only to 

If it be true that energy is known to us as a 
living will, then matter is a revelation of God, 
but not in any sense that negatives its reality. 
Chemistry will justly continue to treat of atoms 
and the formation of molecules, but we cannot 
rationally follow the teachings of chemistry with- 
out thinking of God." 

Three tendencies have become marked in the 
course of the history of thought The one is 
that of pantheism, which makes God all; the 
other is that of panegoism, which makes the soul 
all ; finally, panmaterialism declares that there is ^ 
nothing but matter. This is the contradictory 
of the error that matter is nothing. The truth 
j seems to be in the recognition of matter as a 
{ middle term between God and the soul. The 
reality of the soul, God, and matter is a spontane- 
ous faith, necessarily incomplete, often intellec- 

' Popular Science Monthly^ March, 1896, art. " Failure of Scien- 
tific Materialisin.*' 

' Bowne, Metaphysics, p. 308. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

tually latent, but so universally prevalent that it 
fells into the classification of what Ferrier calls 
" the common to all." Undue emphasis on either 
one of these terms unbalances life, which is only 
good and happy in proportion to the due practi- 
cal acknowledgment of all the threa 

Matter as the middle term between God and 
the soul is the medium of the divine self-revela- 
I tion. The relation of the soul to the body is 
a figure of the relation of God to the world. He 
is incarnate in matter as the soul is incarnate in 
the body. In the presence of external nature 
we are in a condition " which is in analogy to 
that in which we are when beside a human being 
who is speaking to us, or otherwise making signs 
that enable us to enter in some degree into his 
thought" Thus the soul knows and communes 
with God through matter. 

In its search for unity the soul does not cast 
matter aside and find reality only in God. Mon- 
ism is a demand of the mind, but this demand is 
not satisfied with a " one-substance " theory. It 
requires only a " unitary or consistent conception 
of the world." Such a " consistent conception " 
requires that we should not attempt to think of 
either God or man apart from matter. We are 
confined to the data of experience. What may 
be possible under conditions other than those of 

our present existence we do not know, but in 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

the world as we find it three realities, God, 

matter, and the soul, are merged in an harmonious 


There is no evidence that we shall ever exist 

apart from matter. Existence as pure spirit is 

inconceivable. The anticipation of purity of 

soul, as a result of its separation from matter at 

death, is based on the false notion of matter that 

characterized the ancient heresy of Manicheism. 

Matter is not evil; it is not something to be 

got rid of; it is not "a false belief of mortal 

mind," the source of our human woes. It must, 

however, be interpreted in truth before we can 

enjoy harmonious lifa Christian Science denies 

matter, and hence, whatever may be its imme- 

diate effect, it must ultimately produce discord 

and disease. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

IL The Mortal Mind. 

There is no life save in OodCs world. A 
humanly devised world is more barren than 
the igneous rocka That the human mind 
must construe the world is evident upon a mo- 
ment's reflection. The mind depends upon media 
for its communication with the world. A bell is 
tolling in a distant tower; the metal vibrates, 
atmospheric waves are set in motion ; they reach 
the ear and excite the nerves ; the nerves extend 
to a certain brain center, where a record is made 
of the nervous excitation. Thus the mind de- 
pends on the media of atmosphere and nerves for 
the phenomena of sound. But the subjective in- 
terpretation must correspond to that of every 
other normal mind. To construe sensations so 
as to derive false mental products is to create a 
fictitious world. 

Still it remains true that the world to each of 
us is mental. " In the interpretation of the exter- 
nal world we rationalize our sense perceptions, 
or we reduce the order of impressions to the order 
of thought Not only do we interpret each sense 
impression, but we combine the interpretations 
derived from all the sense perceptions into a uni- 
tary conception. This is our world. The process 
of interpretation, however, will be somewhat 

modified in each individual mind by heredity, 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

environment, and education, so that the result 
may differ more or less from reality. Is there, ^ 
then, any real external world? Is not the world 
in each mind the only world ? 

This is a question raised in the interest of ego- 
ism, or the doctrine that there is nothing real but 
the soul, and amounts to the affirmation that the 
mind may construe the external world in con- 
tempt of every sound mental principla Over 
against such fantastic imaginations science gives 
us an ideal structure which experience vindicates. 
" A clear distinction is recognizable between the 
* work of the mind ' which is my own arbitrary 
production, and that which is not, between mere 
ideas and scientific truth. . . . Knowledge, there- 
fore, is knowledge, and scientific truth is truth." * 

The Christian Scientist insists on constructing 
his own world. He rejects all science and all 
rational conclusions of the mind, and builds a ^ 
little world within himself according to his own 
arbitrary principles. He enters on a life of self- 
deception, which he inveterately maintains, a kind 
of mental aberration which should be impossible. 
He affirms that matter is nothing, although he . 
employs it for food and clothing, and in all re- 
spects treats the external world like other men. , 
Thus in the cultivation of mental delusions he 
entera a life of unreality, full of contradictions, 

^ Green, Philosophy^ p. 41. 

Christian Science and its Problems 

which can ultimate only in deterioration of the 
mind. When he has cast out the " mortal mind '* 
his last state will be worse than the first The 
resultant will be a mortal mind of very small 

Christian Science is a bad form of bigotry. 
The scientist assumes to know the truth, the exact 
truth, the whole truth. Science and Health is his 
text-book and Bible supplement lie is not and 
cannot be in touch with any other system of 
knowledge. Science to him is but a product of 
mortal mind. lie can receive light only from his 
own source. That cannot be questioned. The 
system is nonexpansive. It is like cast iron — it 
will break before it bends. It can absorb noth- 
ing. The mind of its author indurated it at birth. 

Hence the scientist must ever hold others in 
haughty contempt, nor dare he have an inquiring 
mind. He must shun all books but his own, 
and all men but those of his own coterie. "We 
weep because others weep, we yawn because 
they yawn, and we have smallpox because oth- 
ers have it ; but mortal mind contains and carries 
the infection. When this mental contagion is 
understood we shall be more careful of our com- 
pany ; and we shall avoid the loquacious tattler 
about disease as we should avoid the advocate of 
crime."* This principle the scientist applies 

* Science and Healthy p. 47. 

The Philosophy of Christian Science 

very generally. He must close his mind to the 

talk of the thoroughfare, and guard himself in 

passing the time of day with a neighbor. It 

would never do to say, " How do you do ? " or, 

" Are you well to-day? " This would be a fatal 

recognition of the claim of mortal mind. For 

him there is nothing but exclusiveness and self- 



Christian Science and its Problems 

m. God. 

The assertion that God is " principle," and not 
personal, is fundamental in Mrs. Eddy*s scheme. 
And yet she says, " God is personal, in its scien- 
tific sense, but not in any anthropomorphic 
sensa" That is, we must not ascend to the 
knowledge of God from the knowledge of man. 
" He is divine principle, supreme and incorporal 
being, mind, spirit, soul, life, truth, love." These 
terms, she says, are synonymous, and we are 
left to infer that there are no shades of diflference 
in their use. Spirit and soul are identical, so also 
are soul and truth. The thought of God will 
permit of no concrete expression ; abstract terms 
are its only exponent But abstract tenns have 
little value in satisfying man's religious need. 
The noblest imagery is that which describes God 
in terms of man. God's hand and eye and heart 
portray relations of his Fatherhood to us. True, 
such terms may convey only imperfect concep- 
tions of God to the mind, but they cannot be 
abandoned while we remain what we are. * * Thus 
always men have imagined the divine after the 
human pattern ; it is an inevitable idealism, and 
if it be the greatest of illusions, it is one luminous 
with all the light there is for us in the present 
order of things." The transcendence of God thus 

takes tangible form in the mind, and "without the 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

transcendent relation of God, and our consequent 
obligatory relation to him, all cultus shrinks 
into mere subjective emotion and sentiment" * 

This indeed is what becomes of Mrs. Eddy's 
schema She probably intends to avoid panthe- 
ism, but she leaves very little room for the divine 
transcendence She declares that God is all, but 
this is not equivalent to the proposition that God 
is more than the sum of all things ; conversely 
it ends practically in the identity of God with all 
things. Thus she says, speaking of man : ** The 
science of being shows it . . . impossible for man 
to be a separate intelligence from his Maker " (p. 
205) ; " The soul or mind of man is God " (p. 198) ; 
and again : " The term souls, or spirits, is as im- 
proper as the teiin gods. Soul, or spirit, signifies 
deity, and nothing else " (p. 462). It is hardly 
possible that such language can be construed in 
harmony with a consistent theism. 

Let us consider what we mean by personality. 
I am a person — that is, I have power freely to de- 
termine myself. I possess reason and can weigh 
motives, in view of which I can direct the moral 
course of my life. The substance of my being 
I discover in my identity ; I am the same person 
I have always been. I have desires that reach 
beyond the mere acquisition of material things, 
and will not be satisfied until I have found an- 

^ Sterrett, Studies in HegeCs PhUosophy^ p. 66. 
(4) 49 

Christian Science and its Problems 

other person as an end of life, an end in which my 
entire personality may rest Thus the element 
of love appears. It is the very self that loves, 
and what I love in others is personality like my 
own. Of all these facts I am conscious ; and thus 
self-consciousness is at the base of personality. 
No philosophy can deprive me of these elements 
of personality, nor invalidate this source of knowl- 
edge. It is not more true that ** God is all " than 
that I am a person ; and if it is true that "God 
is all," the fact must be interpreted in the light of 
my personality. It is useless to assert that the 
infinite cannot be measured by the finite, for 
whatever truth the assertion may contain it re- 
mains equally true that the reality of the infinite 
cannot do away with the reality of the finite. 
" In him all finite things find, not lose, their real- 
ity. . . . All things in God does not mean 
nothing but God." ' 

The only conception that I can form of God is 
that he is a personality like myself. If he were 
less a personality than myself, then I should be 
greater than God. All that is essential to myself 
I know is also essential to the divine Being. In 
him reason, will, and love come to their perfec- 
tion, and he must self-consciously possess these 
elements of personality. It is on this very fact 
that our faith in this universe reposes. It is a 

1 Stttdies in HegeVs Phihiophy^ p. 23. 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

trustworthy universe because such a God is its 
ground. "If the term * person/ as distinguished 
from * thing/ is taken as the one term which es- 
pecially signalizes moral relation among beings, 
and which implies moral order, as distinguished 
from merely mechanical or physical order ; and 
if the universe of reality, in its moral principle, 
must be treated as an object of moral trust, when 
we live in obedience to its conditions, does not 
this mean that it is virtually personal, or revela- 
tion of a person rather than a thing — an infinite 
person, not an infinite thing? If our deepest re- 
lation to it must be ethical trust in perfect wisdom 
and goodness or love at the heart of it — trust in 
its harmonious adaptations to all who are willing 
to be physically and morally adapted to it — this 
is just to say that our deepest or final relation to 
reality is ethical rather than physical ; that per- 
sonality instead of thingness is the highest form 
under which man at any rate can conceive of God. 
This is the moral personification, or finally theistic 
conception, of the universe of experience." * 

In order to satisfy the mind's demand for per- 
sonality at the base of the universe it is not nec- 
essary that we should suppose that God draws 
conclusions from premises as we do, nor that he 
should exercise the power of memory. This 
would be anthropomorphism to the extent of mak- 

* Fraser, Philosophy of Themiiy vol ii, p. 149. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

ing God a man. The conception of God as an 
old man sitting at his desk in the skies, and scan- 
ning human actions and the general on-going of 
the world, or as a king in his far-off palace with 
his court assembled about him, is repulsive to 
Christian thought. The personality of God in no 
way carries with it such a conception. But the 
definite thought of personality came as a growth, 
and from a most rudimentary beginning proceeded 
stage by stage with the progress of the race until 
it became one of the most sublime cognitions of 
the human mind. 

Here, then, are two personalities separate and 
distinct, God and myself. This is knowledge. It 
avails not to say with Mrs. Eddy that the " soul 
is God " and " God is soul ; " " There are no 
souls." Whoever makes such an assertion must 
face the fact that everyone knows himself to be a 

But if it is true that I am a peraonality distinct 
from God, can I antagonize God in my personal- 
ity ? Mrs. Eddy asserts that I cannot, else God 
would be the creator of evil Logic, by the way, 
avails little against the facts of consciousness, and 
no fact of consciousness is more universally at- 
tested than the power of self to resist God. The 
force of this fact Mrs. Eddy attempts to evade in 
her doctrine of the mortal mind, "nothing claim- 
ing to be something," itself a nonentity imagining 



The Philosophy of Christian Science 

error to be real, "belief that life, substance, and 
intelligence are in and of matter." She would 
make it appear that such antagonism is not in 
the real self, but in a kind of fictitious appendage 
of the real self. This, however, is not the fact of 
consciousness. No fact is more profound in the 
mind than that the real antagonism to God is in 
the heart of selfhood. It resides not in thought 
or action, but in wilL 

How does this fact of sin make God the author 
of evil ? That God cannot_creaie_e3dLia.aLf unda-^^ 
mental axiom with Mrs. Eddy. But cannot he 
create the conditions that make evil possible? 
Was man necessitated by his creation to be God- 
like? If so, how came the mortal mind? The 
answer is, through the falL But if the mortal 
mind came through the fall, why not real antag- 
onism to God? It is interesting to note that 
while Mrs. Eddy smuggles in the fact of the fall, 
she gives no rational account of it Mortal error 
was somehow supposed to exist apart from man, 
who was the reflection of his Maker, and by some 
subtle power insinuated itself into human life. 
Then we find the divine reflection obscured by 
mortal mind. How came this marvelous change ? 
It will be observed in Mra Eddy's teaching that 
there is no place for free wilL The original man 
had no power to change himself any more than 

the reflection of a man*s face in a mirror can 



Christian Science and its Problems 

cliange itself. Grod did not create mortal mind ; 
how, then, did it come to becloud the image in 
the mirror ? 

We cannot ignore the power of free will God 
did create man a free, self-determining personal- 
ity, in whom was lodged the possibility of a war- 
fare between the lower and the higher life, an 
antagonism to God. The only life consistent with 
man's existence is one of harmonious ethical re- 
lation to God. 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

IV. Fundamental Principles. 

Science and Health is a tissue of incoherent 
speculations, tied together, if we may allow so 
much, by the following propositions : 

♦*1. God is All. 

**2. God is Good. Good is Mind. 

** 3. God, Spirit, being all, nothing is matter. 

'^4. Life, God, omnipotent Good, deny death, evil, 
sin, disease. 

** Disease, sin, evil, death, deny Good, omnipotent 
God, Life." 

The book itself is supposed to be a defense and 
exposition of these fundamental propositions, but 
it is an iteration and reiteration of them, the ob- 
ject of which is to prepare the way for mental 
healing. Disease is supposed by the mortal mind 
to reside in matter, which must therefore be shown 
to be nothing. God is now all that remains, and 
as God cannot be diseased, there can, therefore, 
be no diseasa The first in the series is radical to 
the system : " God is All." But we have shown 
that God is not all in any sense that would 
exclude the personality of man. Disharmony 
with God is a fact of human consciousness, and 
from disharmony come evil, disease, and death. 

Mrs. Eddy seems to labor ainder confusion of 
thought concerning matter. First, she misrepre- 
sents the view of matter taken by scienca For 


Christian Science and its Problems 

example : " Matter is sentient " (p. 180). " Mor- 
tal belief, misnamed man, says matter has intelli- 
gence and sensation " (p. 180). " That matter is 
substantial, or has life and sensation, is one of the 
false beliefs of mortals " (p. 174). ** Mind, not 
matter, is the Creator " (p. 152). Thus she charges 
that those who believe in the objective reality of 
matter claim that matter is sentient, intelligent, 
living, and a creative power. It is impossible to ; 
apologize for such misrepresentations. Secondly, 
she assumes that it is currently believed that mat- 
ter is antagonistic to God, the very seat of evil. 
On the contrary, both philosophical and theolog- 
ical thinkers regard matter as good, not opposed 
to God, the ground of the divine self -manifesta- 

The denial of matter carries with it the most 
preposterous conclusions. Thus she remarks : 
"We say the body suffers from the effects of 
cold, heat, fatigue, etc., but this is belief and 
error, and not the truth of being, for matter can- 
not suffer; mortal mind alone suffers, and not 
because a law of matter has been trespassed, but 
a law of mind." Cold can have no effect, there- 
fore it is not necessary to dress warmly and to 
have fires in winter. You may thrust your hand 
in the fire with impunity. Poison may be eaten 
like sugar; sanitation and hygiene are of no 

avail; dirt on the skin is matter in the mortal 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

eye ; and much more of the same sort if matter is 
nothing. It is a very common resort for teachers 
of this class, when the absurdity of such teaching 
is exposed, to claim that it is aij esoteric gnosis. 
"Can you understand this?" she says to Eev. 
Stacy Fowler. " No ; and no one can fully until 
I educate the spiritual sense to perceive the syb- 
stance of spirit and the substanceless of matter." 
Thus the " common to all " is not real, only the 
"special to ma" 

A specimen of her logic may be found on page 
7, where she says, " There is no pain in truth and 
no truth in pain." This proposition is intended 
to affirm that there is no reality in pain because 
there is no pain in truth. Let it be noticed that ' 
the terms of this inversion are not univocal. As 
soon as we give truth the same meaning in both 
members of the inversion the fallacy appears in 
the light of all experience. Distribute the term 
truth as in the foUovdng proposition : Some truth 
is very painful. Eemorse can hardly be described 
as a delusion, and the mind that knows remorse 
knows pain. 

Thus a tissue of assertions constitutes the but- 
tress of her fundamental principles, and from 
them to conclude that "God is all," and that 
therefore death, evil, sin, disease are unrealities, 
is to require a dangerous stretch of reason, and to 
mistake quicksand for "principles" upon which 

she builds an ambitious and revolutionary system. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

V. Science. 

Kepler, when he read the laws of the heavens, 
exclaimed, " I think thy thoughts after thee." 
This is the delightful service of all science — it in- 
terprets the intelligence in nature. There is a 
certain affinity between man and his surround- 
ings, and the ground of that affinity is intelli- 
genca Eeason in nature invites man to the work 
of interpretation. Science is the response of reason 
to reason. Man can no more suppress the scien- 
tific faculty than he can suppress the activity of 
his mind. His first questions are addressed to 
nature, and it is nature's secrets that he is ever 
trying to unravel. Science is not a scheme of 
the human mind imposed on nature; it is the 
discovery and elucidation of what is already in 

It is therefore fundamental to science that it 
should deal with facts — ^that is, with individual 
actualities or realities as an atom, or a force, or a 
law of nature. The fact must be such as can be 
verified through the channels of observation, and 
the vei'ification of the fact is of vital importance 
to science. But facts should never be considered 
individually exclusive of their relationa " The 
world is not a collection of individual facts exist- 
ing side by side and capable of being known 

separately. A fact is nothine; except in its rela- 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

tions to other facts ; and as these relations are 
multiplied in the progress of knowledge, the na- 
ture of the so-called fact is indefinitely modified." 
It is the work of science to trace out these rela- 
tions, and not only to discern clearly and com- 
pletely the discrete fact, but also to define its 
connections . and discriminate the system of 
which it is a part. Science is thus a legitimate 
process of analysis and synthesis. 

Let us take an example of a fact : Food will 
nourish the human body. This is a fact Let 
the doubter try to live without food. In nourish- 
ing the human body certain particles of food are 
carried to the bones, other particles to the tissues 
and nerves. How do we know this ? Because 
we find that the constituents of the body are con- 
tained in the food ; the involution must be equal 
to the evolution. Christian Science is powerless 
to change this fact. If a child's teeth do not 
form normally, the addition of phosphates to its 
food will hasten the process of dentition. This is 
a very familiar fact An acid is a fact, so also is 
an alkali ; it is also a fact that they will combine 
with a neutral result The theory .that ." matter j' 
is nothing " cannot annihilate thes e fac ts. Car-j 
bon and oxygen are facts; it is also a fact that 
they combine in the production of heat The 
Christian Scientist never builds a fire by putting 

coals in the grate and then excluding the air. It 


Christian Science and its Problems 

is a fact that the nutrition of the system depends 
on the circulation of the blood, by which the par- 
ticles of food are carried to their appropriate des- 
tination. It is a fact that the circulation of the 
blood depends largely upon the contractile power 
of the heart. Facts like these find a true classifi- 
cation in a system of physiology and hygiene. 

There is an evident value of knowledge thus 
classified. From chemistry we learn that car- 
bonic acid gas will extinguish fire. Hence the 
chemical fire extinguisher. From the science of 
electricity we have learned to light our streets 
and propel our cars. The science of pneumatics 
has given us the locomotiva Optics and chem- 
istry have given us photography ; indeed, modem 
civilization is the gift of scienca 

Science, however, has passed through a slow 
and laborious growth. Its origin may be traced 
to man*s first reflection on the phenomena of na- 
ture. The Babylonian priest, in his silent watch- 
tower, aided only by the natural eye, laid the 
foundation of astronomical scienca The Egyp- 
tian also knew something of astronomy, and 
much of geometry, and made considerable prog- 
ress with chemistry and metallurgy. Physics, 
chemistry, and physiology were studied by the 
Greeks, and everywhere in the ancient world the 
feeling was awakened that the study of nature 

must ultimate in the mastery of nature. The 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

noblest minds that have graced the human race 
have partaken of this feeling. Aristotle, Hippo- 
crates, Paracelsus, Galileo, Bruno, Kepler, New- 
ton, Faraday, and Helmholtz have struggled with 
the mysteries of nature, and have sought to make 
science conform to a system of true and certain 

Shall all this splendid product of the noblest 
minds be put aside as of no worth — as " a false 
belief of mortal mind? " If not, why not? Be- 
cause it deals with and rationalizes facts that 
underlie all life. To dispense with science is to 
dispense with rationality. 

If science is true — chemistry, astronomy, bot- 
any, for instance ' — then the sciences of anatomy 
and physiology must likewise be true, because 
they rest on observed and classified facts. If 
anatomy and physiology, why not pathology? 
Are not the facts of abnormality as patent as 
those of normality? Is not a cataract on the eye 
as much a fact as the crystalline lens? Is not a 
lesion of the valves of the heart as much a fact 
as the heart itself? If these are facts, why may 
they not be studied and classified ? 

What is the difference between the mind that 
discovers and classifies pathological facts and the 
mind that attends to the facts of chemistry and 
astronomy? The same mental faculties are 

* Sciefice afid Healthy p. 82. 

Christian Science and its Problems 

brought into operation in discovering and classi- 
fying the facts of pathology as in dealing with 
the facts of chemistry. Why should one be the 
product of mortal mind more than the other? 

This is the justification of medical science. 
Like all science, it should not be estimated by its 
results, but by its methods. Medical science aims 
at the interpretation of nature. It deals with a 
certain class of natural facts which solicit investi- 
gation just as much as the facts that are included 
in geological science. If medical science is put 
without the pale of legitimacy, so must all science 
submit to the same exclusion. Such a course is 
an act of self-stultification, which is impossible 
to the normal mind. It may be true that medi- 
cal science limits its sphere far within its true 
bounds ; there may be facts belonging to it that 
are left unconsidered ; but this in no way dis- 
qualifies it as a truly rational procedure to the ex- 
tent that it carries research. It might have pro- 
founder comprehension of its facts were its field 
enlarged, but its methods must be accredited 
whatever its defects. 

Christian Science, on the other hand, denies 

facts. It refuses to clearly determine facts or to 

classify them, hence it rejects the methods as 

well as the conclusions of science. In so doing it 

abandons rationality and seeks to destroy the 

foundations of civilized life. The fantastic im- 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

aginations which it calls knowledge are brought 
forward as a substitute for the scientific conclu- y 
sions of the human intellect, and this the world 
is informed is Christian Scienca The wonder is 
that Christianity has been able to endure the rep- 
etition of such caricatures from age to aga 



Christian Science and its Problems 

VL Evil. 

"Evil," says Principal Fairbaim, "is a philo- 
sophical term, and denotes every condition, cir- 
cumstance, or act that in any manner or degree 
interferes with complete perfection or happiness 
of being, whether physical, metaphysical, or mor- 
al" * Christian Science defines evil as unreality 
— that is, the opposite of divine order. Let-its 
inquire how far this is a correct representation. 

We will begin with physical evil. Opening 
the Bible at Isa. xlv, 7, we read, " I form the 
light, and create darkness; I make peace, and 
create evil ; I am the Lord, that doeth all these 
things." If this is a protest against Persian dual- 
ism, it explicitly affirms that God creates physical 
eviL If, on the other hand, it means that " peace " 
is that happy state to which Israel should be re- 
stored, and " evil" is the exile, the affirmation is 
not changed because the exile was physical evil. ' 
How far, then, do we find the declaration of 
the prophets, that God is the cause of physical 
evil, verified by historical fact ? Science teaches 
us that the first men endured privation and suf- 
fered from exposura They existed in the midst 
of gigantic and ruthless forces. The forests were 

' Pliice of Christ in Modem Tkeohgy^ p. 452. 

' See also Isa. liv, 16 ; Amos iii, 6 ; Lam. iii, 38. 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

swept by storms of relentless fury, beasts of im- 
mense size and ferocity roamed in countless num- 
bers through the trackless wilds, and food was 
secured only by great effort For protection from 
the storms the caves were their first dwelling- 
placa The very fact that they lived in caves 
proves that they felt the pain and misery of ex- 
posure. Their muscular strength was no match 
for their brute enemies. Means of warfare had to 
be invented. The rude weapons of those early 
men may still be found in the river diift, the re- 
mains of a race that existed many thousands of 
years before the beginning of history. Deep 
buried in the calcareous floors of great caverns 
have been discovered the instruments of warfare 
which those wild tribes employed in the terrific 
struggle that consumed so much of their life. 
" They had bows and arrows, daggers of reindeer 
horn, spears tipped with flint or bone, and har- 
poons. Besides they made a formidable club of 
the lower jawbone of the cave bear, with its 
canine tooth still left in its place." Bather a for- 
midable array of weapons for a people who knew 
nothing of pain. Sometimes, in war with other 
tribes, they fell into the hands of their enemies 
and became a toothsome morsel for cannibals. 
Sometimes they fell prey to the hyena, the mark 
of whose savage teeth is still left on their bones. 
Whoever invented the formula, "There is no 

(5) 66 

Christian Science and its Problems 

truth m pain," it certainly was not one of these 
primeval men. 

As man's nature grew more complex methods 
had to be devised to satisfy his increasing wants. 
In his primitive state his clothing consisted of 
skins, his house was a rock shelter, his weapons 
were flint, and food was the great end of his life. 
But his intellect, was quickened by the very 
struggle for existence. He came to prize what- 
ever reinforced his powers, and the acquisition of 
this reinforcement was a matter of great impor- 
tance. This was shown especially in the growth 
of social relations and the founding of civil order. 
Here appeared especially the advantage of knowl- 
edge. Ignorance came to be recognized as a 
hindrance, hedging the way of man in the attain- 
ment of "complete perfection or happiness of 
being," and so far ignorance was an evil, and al- 
ways has been an evil. 

Mrs. Eddy says that "life, God, omnipotent 
Good" denies evil; and that evil denies "life, 
God, omnipotent Good." That is, if there is evil, 
there is no God ; and if God is, there is no evil. 
The denial of evil in the light of the facts we 
^have just considered is absurd. Is there, there- 
fore, no God ? Is not this formula a vapid asser- 
tion, empty of both sense and logic? She has a 
penchant for conveying conclusions not contained 

in the premises. Thus she says, " If pain is as 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

real as the absence of pain, both must be im- 
mortal" She leaves the reader to draw the con- 
clusion that pain cannot be immortal, therefore 
pain is not real. But who can prove that pain is 
not immortal? The refinement of our nature 
makes pain more delicate, not less real. Again, 
she says, " There is no pain in truth and no truth 
in pain." With the first term of this inversion 
she is not concenied ; her purpose is to assert that 
there is no reality in pain. If she means by real 
something " actually existing, not fictitious, im- 
aginary," then her statement is erroneous, as we 
have seen. But she boldly denies the possibility 
of sentiency. " Nerves do not feeL" Let Mrs. 
Eddy remember that we do not know dead mat- 
ter. All that we know of feeling is in connection 
with the nerves. If you put your finger in the 
fire, she says, you should not feel pain. " Holy 
inspiration has created states of mind which are 
able to nullify the action of the flames " (p. 54). 
Nerves, in her scheme, seem to have no power to 
convey sensations. How is it, then, that we asso- 
ciate sweetness with sugar? Is sugar on the 
tongue as neutral as chalk ? Why is it that we 
pass our hand over a surface and say whether it 
is smooth or rough ? If nerves are sensationless, let 
Mrs. Eddy explain how we have arrived at the 
attributes of objects around us. We do not live 

in a neutral, colorless world. It is full of variety 


Christian Science and its Problems 

and beauty of form and color and quality, and 
the nerves of the body are the points of the mind's 
contact with the external world. To deny this is 
to deny the reality of all human knowledge ; to 
admit it is to concede that we are sentient beings, 
and hence that we can feel pain. i 

** There is no pain in trutii." As a matter of 
fact the most exquisite pain is in truth. A con- 
sciousness of sin is real and painful. The exi- 
gencies of Mra. Eddy's scheme lead her practi- 
cally to deny the reality of moral evil. She re- 
minds us of Spinoza, who also denied evil, as 
he held that all was necessitated, and therefore 
nothing could exist which ought not to exist 
Hence he also denied free will, a denial implicit 
in the teachings of Mrs. Eddy. It is a doctrine 
of which she makes no use ; indeed, after deny- 
ing personality there is no room left for it If I ' 
am a person, constructing my own character, de- 
termining my own end in life, then I have free 
will. If I have no free will, I am not a person. 
But the consciousness of free will and responsi- 
bility in man is profound. We have the power 
of choice, which we constantly exercise. When 
a man chooses he also rejects. When good is his 
choice he rejects the opposite of good, which is 
evil. In the exercise of such a choice there at- ' 
tends the sense of moral responsibility. If there 

were nothing but good to be chosen, there could 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

be no such sense of responsibility. If evil were » 
only an unreality and delusion, the profound 
sense of responsibility in choice would vanish. . 
But this sense of responsibility is indestructible 
and universal, and as such witnesses to the reality 
of moral evil. 

Mrs. Eddy says evil denies God — that is, evil > 
is so incompatible with the nature of God that to \ 
admit the fact of evil is to deny the reality of 
God — and let it be remembered that this is physi- / 
cal, not moral, evil of which she speaks. Disease 
and pain are the chief forms of evil known to her 

May not the contrary of her proposition be 
true ? Physical evil is a fact, as we have seen, 
and God is a reality in some sense compatible 
with that fact The solution of the problem may 
be beyond the power of the human mind, just as 
all facts of life retreat out of the finite into the 
infinite ; but they begin in the finite, and so far 
what is known of them is real knowledge If we 
assume that we are a part of a cosmical system of 
organic adaptations, in which " everthing is fitted 
into everything else," the assumption is sup- 
ported by both observation and experience. 
Means and ends are recognized everywhere in 
natura Science is full of the language of teleol- 
ogy, or purpose with reference to a definite end, 

and the adaptations in nature seem to culminate 


Christian Science and its Problems 

in man. The whole system is adapted to man, 
and man is adapted to the whole. We have, 
therefore, an unwavering faith in the power that 
underlies the system and adaptations of nature. 
It is a power that makes for righteousness ; it is 
purposive of perfection. Take away this faith, 
and pessimism alone remains. It is a faith un- 
diminished by evil ; that endures through the 
darkest night of human experience, because it 
knows that the ways of God are inscrutable. 
" Clouds and darkness are round about him, but 
righteousness and judgment are the establish- 
ment of his throne." 

There must, therefore, be an end that pain is 
intended to serve, and moralists are doubtless 
right in regarding pain as well as pleasure as an 
incentive to right action — that is, pleasure is an 
incentive to the pursuit of the right, and pain 
/ of aversion to wrong. Thus the latter plays an 
important part in the attainment of man's ideal. 
Hence we see how important the consciousness 
of pain. Any system that would deprive man 
of this consciousness would so far thwart his 
moral development. 

It is an error to treat pain as a delusion. We 
must recognize its profound uses in the economy 
of life. Has it not offered the "highest possi- 
bilities and most fruitful occasions of character? " 

Has not fortitude, a most sturdy virtue, grown 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

under its discipline? And has not pain often 
afforded the strongest evidence of love, as when 
a strong man perils his life for his family, or a 
patriot is shot to pieces in defense of liberty ? 
The chief end of life is not to escape from pain, 
for in so doing we may miss the highest good. 
To make it contribute to manhood is to subdue 
pain. To the reflection from the neighboring 
snow fields Davos and St Moritz owe largely 
their high winter temperature, and thus often 
the most forbidding things in life bring us the 
opposite of what they threaten. So it is with pain. 
It lays ruthless hands upon the structure of the 
body ; it rends into tiitters the veil of life, but 
this is the very process by which life acquires its 
fruitage; and "what matters it if the blossoms 
are swept away by the wind and rain, so the fruit 

is set?"* 

Again, sympathy, so vital in the evolution of 
a worthy life, begins at pain. Even animals will 
rush to one of their kind moaning in distress, 
and it is this instinct that rises into Christian 
charity, into love that cherishes, and sacrifices 

* Christian Science rules Paul out when he makes such state- 
ments as the following: "Ye know that it was by reason of 
physical infirmity that I preached the gospel unto you on the 
first of my two visits ; and the facts of my bodily constitution 
which were trying to you were not despise ' •'or rejected by you, 
but ye received me as a messenger of viod." Gal. iv, 18, 14 

(see Greek text). See also 2 Cor. i, 8. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

for those that suffer. It was the pains of the 
world that took hold of Christ When he healed 
the lad at the Mount of Transfiguration he did 
not stand aloof from him, but he took him by 
the hand, he came very near and entered into 
sympathy with him. Thus he grasps every hand 
of distress and pain, and presents the great ex- 
ample of sacrifice. To all men, as to him, " pain 
is the possibility of all that lies in sacrifice, be- 
cause it is the possibility of disinterested sympa- 
thy, and so of all self-sacrifica" Hence sympathy 
is the bond of all vital union among men ; as the 
best natures always have the most of it, so, as 
Coleridge says, " By sympathy all powerful souls 
have kindred with each other." What should 
we miss more in life than sympathy? _We 
spare the labors of men ; we may losk^sition, 
influence, wealth, and even health, and yeTlive 
on in comfort if with resignation ; but life would 
not be worth living without human sympathy. 
Thus pain, without which there could be no sym- 
pathy, is a minister of God. 

Neither pain nor death deny God ; both afiirm 
him. Death, which nature uses in the service of 
life, is a mighty angel of God. Without it the 
earth would soon be overpeopled and life de- 
prived of its latitude. It keeps open the field 
for life ; it moves one generation off while an- 
other enters on the theater of time. It avoids 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

the disadvantages of universal senility, for not 
even Christian Science can prevent us growing old. 
It clears the way for every discovery of truth, 
makes progress possible, and makes impossible 
the immortality of bigotry. It brings a sudden 
end to despotism and tyranny, and to the pro- 
moters of moral evil, while it gives a fresh 
chance to the growth of virtue and goodness 
with every generation. The fear of death must 
depart from the Christ-conquered heart, because 
it has no realm of its own, no sinister purposes, 
no message but love. It is true "that life ia 
ever lord of death," and hence it is a vile cal^ 
umny that charges death with denying God. 

Amiel says : " To curse grief is easier than to 
bless it, but to do so is to fall back into the point 
of view of the earthly, the carnal, the natural 
man. By what has Christianity subdued the 
world if not by the apotheosis of grief, by its 
marvelous transmutation of suffering into tri- 
umph, of the crown of thorns into the crown of 
glory, and of a gibbet into a symbol of salvation ? 
What does the apotheosis of the cross mean if 
not the death of death, the defeat of sin, the 
beatification of martyrdom, the raising to the 
skies of voluntary sacrifice, the defiance of pain ? 
* death, where is thy sting? grave, where 
is thy victory ? ' By long brooding over this 

theme — ^the agony of the just, peace in the midst 


Christian Science and its Problems 

of agony, and the heavenly beauty of such peace 
— humanity came to understand that a new re- 
ligion was bom, a new mode, that is to say, of 
explaining life and of understanding suflEering. 

" Suffering was a curse from which man fled ; 
now it becomes a purification of the soul, a sa- 
cred trial sent by eternal Love, a divine dispen- 
sation meant to sanctify and ennoble us, an 
acceptable aid to faith, a strange initiation into 
happiness. O power of belief ! All remains the 
same, and yet all is changed. A new certitude 
arises to deny the apparent and the tangible ; it 
pierces through the mystery of things ; it places 
an invisible Father behind visible nature; it 
shows us joy shining through tears, and makes 

of pain the beginning of joy." 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

VII. Proof Texts. 

It is not surprising that Mrs. Eddy attempts to 
put the seal of divine approval upon her philoso- 
phy by quotations from the Scriptures. In her 
enthusiasm for a new " discovery " she does what 
hundreds of others have done in like circum- 
stances — she reads it all into the Bible. Her 
method of interpretation beara some resemblance 
to that of Origen and Swedenborg. She does not 
interpret Scripture regardless of any principles, 
but those that she adopts are unsound. Before 
we consider her exegesis let us attend to what con- 
stitutes sound principles of Biblical Interpreta- 

Principles of Biblical Interpretation upon which 
all can agree are very desirable. There can be 
no unity of Christian thought if each one is al- 
lowed to interpret according to his fancy. Nor 
is there any reason why the Bible is an exception 
to all other literature in this respect Interpreta- 
tion of literature in general gives us the princi- 
ples and laws of Biblical Interpretation. This is 
a maxim which has been regarded as incontrover- 
tible by all the great authorities since Ernesti. 
From whence did these principles spring ? Are 
they artificial productions imposed on Scripture 
by extensive learning ? Have they grown out of 
a love for subtleties and nice distinctions? Are 



Christian Science and its Problems 

they sparks of genius? Far from being this, 
they are not the invention of man, scarcely a dis- 
covery of his. " They are coeval with our na- 
ture. Ever since man was created and endowed 
with the powers of speech and made a communi- 
cative, social being he has had occasion to practice 
upon the principles of interpretation, and has 
done so.'* * To understand human speech one 
must be an interpreter, and upon the exercise of 
the commonly accepted principles of interpreta- 
tion all social and business intercourse depends. 
Without these principles we would cease to be 
rational beings in an orderly world. If men in- 
terpreted the language of business as arbitrarily 
as they often interpret the Bible, there could be 
no financial stability. 

Hence in Biblical Interpretation we must con- 
sider the meaning of words, the construction of 
sentences, the environment of the writer, the un- 
expressed relations of thought in the mind of the 
writer, and parallel passages. But we must fur- 
ther constantly bear in mind that the Bible is a 
product of double authorship — the divine and 
human. The unique fact of the divine author- 
ship, however, does not change the principle that 
the words must be interpreted as used in human 

Heilce there is no justification for what is 1 

* Professor Moses Stuart. 

The Philosophy of Christian Science 

'■ known as the double sense of Scriptura Typi- 
cal meaning in a passage does not give it double 
sense, nor is such an interpretation to be derived 
from predictive phophecy. The Scripture never 
claims a double sense for itself ; and if we may 
impose a double sense, why not a threefold or a 
fourfold sense ? 

Some of the early interpreters, indeed, said 
that, as there were four rivers in paradise, there 
should be four streams of truth or teaching flow- 
ing out of the Bible. With a double sense the 
book would become merely a collection of riddles. 
When men want to make riddles they give a 
double sense to language ; but the Bible is not a 
collection of conundrums ; it is a book that the 
uneducated may read intelligently, so that we 
may find in the Christian world a common sense 
of Scriptura 

I What is called " exegesis " in Mrs. Eddy's book 
is at best only an attempt to fortify her system 
by the quotation of sundry texts utterly foreign 

f to the thought Each of these texts she foUowtf^ 
with a reiteration of her ideas, which is made to 
have the appearance of interpretation. 

Thus, take the first verse of Genesis : " In the 
beginning God created the heaven and the earth." 
In the light of all rules of Biblical Interpretation 
this is a plain statement that God created the 

known world. Mrs. Eddy cannot resist the 


Christian Science and its Problems 

temptation to make a riddle of it The passage, 
she says, affirms the eternal verity and unity of 
God and man, including the universe. God 
means the creative principle — life, truth, and 
love. The universe is God*s reflection. " The 
I creation consists of the unfolding' of spiritual 
ideas and their identities, which are embraced in 
the infinite mind and forever reflected." 

Mrs. Eddy says that the word Elohim (trans- 
lated God in this passage) means "life, truth, 
love." Here again she is in error. It means the 
" Being who is feared." " Love casteth out fear," 
hence Elohim did not denote love to the Hebrew 
mind. Further, how does the passage affirm 
the " unity of God and man, including the uni- 
verse? " and where does it contain any warrant 
for the pantheistic method of creation which she 
reads into it ? It is the old fallacy of the double 
sense — Bible riddle-making. 

As we proceed more and more we are involved 
in the spiritualizing of plain Scripture. Thus, 
Gen. i, 6, " And God said. Let there be a firma- 
ment in the midst of the waters, and let it divide 
the waters from the waters. " What does " water " 
mean? What does ** firmament" mean? Let 
our expositor inform us: Firmament has a 
spiritual significance and means "understand- 
ing." She leaves us to infer that truth is the 
water above the firmament, and error is the water 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

under it (p. 499). " God called the firmament 
heaven," says the writer of Genesis. Mrs. Eddy 
says that these words mean that "spirit unites 
understanding to eternal harmony through divine 
science." Why not? It certainly is as easy to 
say this as to say a great many other things in 
her book. 

But Mrs. Eddy waxes bold as she proceeds 
with her exegesis of Genesis. When she comes 
to the seventh verse of the second chapter she 
confronts a passage that requires even a fourfold 
sense to take the " matter " out of it " And the 
Lord God (Jehovah) formed man of the dust of 
the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the 
breath of life; and man became a living soul.'' 
The phrase " dust of the ground "has an ominous 
sound to the Christian Scientist "How can a 
material organization become the basis of man ? 
How can the nonintelligent become the medium 
of mind? " she exclaims, impatiently. " Is it the 
truth ? or is it a lie concerning man and God ? 
It must be the latter," she concludes (p. 517). 

Gen. iii, 16 is handled very cautiously. " Unto 

the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy 

sorrow and thy conception ; in sorrow shalt thou 

bring forth children ; and thy desire shall be to 

thy husband, and he shall rule over thee." This, 

says our exegete, unveils the results of sin, as 

shown in sickness and death. But let the reader 


Christian Science and its Problems 

observe that the immediate cause of these results 
was God. " I will greatly multiply thy sorrow." 
God is thus represented as the cause of sorrow, 
\/pain, evil. How, then, does evil deny God ? The 
fourth proposition on page 7 of Science and Health 
cannot be defended in the light of this text' 

We are anticipating presently to be introduced 
to the origin of mortal mind, and we are brought 
to it in the comment on Gen. iii, 22-24 Here it 
is conceded that it had a definite beginning. The 
first chapter of Genesis, she says, represents crea- 
tion " as spiritual, entire, and good." Here " evil 
has no local habitation or name ; " but the second 
chapter " is to depict the falsity of en-or and its 
effects." But how did this mortal mind arise ? 
If God is good, and God is all, if man when he 
came from the hands of his Creator was a pure 
reflection of God, if " will-power is but an illusion 
of belief " and " not a faculty of soul " (p. 486); if, 
therefore, man has no power in himself to deter- 
mine his own life, whence came mortal mind ? 
What relation does God, who is all, and man, who 
is a reflection of God, sustain to mortal mind, 
which is " error creating other errors ? " This 
question must be answered to save the air castle 
of mortal mind. 

It is unnecessary to follow further the spirit- 
ualizing method of Mrs. Eddy's exegesis. Often 

* See page 47. 

The Philosophy of Christian Science 

she brings passages together in such a relation as 
to create a false impression. Thus she says that 
Christ's imperative command to his disciples was 
to "preach the gospel to every creature," " heal 
the sick^^ (p. 343). Now, healing the sick was not 
included in the great commission and was not 
thus passed on as an authoritative command to 
his Church. She says the firat Christian duty 
Jesus taught his followers was "the healing 
power of truth and love" (p. 336). If by this 
she means that truth and love are healing to a 
sin-sick soul, the statement is not new to Chris- 
tians. If she means that the healing of physical 
disease was the supreme Christian duty that Jesus 
imposed on his followers, it is not true. The error 
at this point is vital. The mission of Jesus to 
the world was not primarily the healing of dis- 
ease His work was spiritual. He came to touch 
the springs of man's deepest life; to break the 
chains of spiritual slavery ; to put hope in the 
heart of the poor and desponding ; to open to the 
blind a new and true view of life ; to usher in 
the acceptable year of the Lord, the kingdom of 
God in the human heart Physical refreshing is 
an incident of this spiritual renewing. He came 
to bring life to the soul of man. He addressed 
the reason, the imagination, the will. He sought 
to restore normal relations between man and God, 

and thus to harmonize the world. He instituted 
(6) 81 




Christian Science and its Problems 

a spiritual movement that has progressively con- 
tributed to human well-being in its entire range. 
He was to the individual and thence to society 
a divine uplifting power ; he was the concrete 
expression of divine truth toward man ; he was 
the ideal of life, and be became incarnate in hu- 
manity, that in him humanity might become di- 
vine, and that divinity might become human.* 
But his mission was not to work miracles. He 
sought to hush the report of his miracles ; he 
would be known as a teacher come from God, a 
planter of truth in the mind; a king who had 
come to establish his kingdom — the realm of 
truth, the kingdom of God in which the will of 
God should be done in the whole of human 

Too large a place is given to miracles in all 
/that class of teaching to which Christian Science 
belongs. The whole course of nature is miracu- 
lous if the word means the manifestation of divine 
power ; and we are most intimately joined to the 
course of nature. Nature is not thus confined to 
things that are material, but includes all estab- 
lished order, whether it be in the region of sense 
or of spirit It is not improbable that in view of 
man's free agency, which has been used in the in- 
terest of evil — the assertion of his personality 
above scientific order — God may deviate from 

* John Hi, lY ; xii, 47 ; xviii, 37 ; xvii, 21, 23. 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

the course of nature in the interest of grace, but 
as we cannot think of God acting without law, 
miracles must still be natural — ^that is, dispensed 
by the higher law of perfect reason acting with 
regard to the most beneficent purposa Hence it 
is nature that should be emphasized, and it is na- ^ n 
ture we need, and less the supernatural, in order 
to correctly conceive the Gospel and the king- 
dom of God. In fact, it is the regular and not the 
irregular course of nature that Christianity en- 
courages. Thus it may ultimately be discovered 
that many of the miracles of Jesus were wrought 
under some psychic law unknown to his time, 
some law, it is true, discoverable to human genius ; 
but this does not prove that he exercised only " the 
natural endowments of a remarkable man who 
was before his time in the healing art" On the 
other hand, it would show that the methods of na- 
ture are divinely approved, just as they are ap- 
proved in our moral education in the experience 
of our common life. Science shows many things 
belonging to the established order of nature to- 
day that yesterday were regarded as miraculous. 
That Jesus conformed to nature does not deprive 
him of the glory of his works. Is nature less the 
manifestation of the immanent God because it is 
orderly ? Hence we cannot believe that God will 
stop the wheels of nature, violate its laws, and 

make some startling display of power just to 


Christian Science and its Problems 

please the freak of some dyspeptic or to answer 
the prayers of some erratic mind. 

The glory of the Son of God was manifested in 
his mighty works — that is, he thus showed him- 
self intimately allied with God, and thus worthy 
of attention as the divine teacher.* The recogni- 
tion of these works as natural in no way detracts 
from his mission to reveal the Father. " We can, 
therefore, afford to regard the attempt," says Pro- 
fessor Bruce, "to reduce the miracles of healing 
to the level of the natural with considerable equa- 
nimity. If that view were established, these 
* miracles * would lose their value as signs an- 
nexed to a doctrinal revelation — ^the function on 
which the older apologists laid so much stress — 
but they would retain and even in some respects 
increase their value as a very important integral 
part of revelation — as a revelation of the infinite 
depths of compassion in the heart of the Son of 

It should be remembered that the gospels con- 
tain the record of only about thirty so-called 
miracles, according to the usual interpretation, 
and this number may no doubt be largely re- 
duced. In current Jewish thought at the time 
of Christ the symbolism of death was applied to 
those who were " dead in sin." In the Targum 

' John ii, 11 ; zi, 4 ; ix, 3. 

* Miraadotu EUmeni in the Gospels^ p. t(4. 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

blindness was applied to deficiency of spiritual 
vision, lameness to spiritual inactivity. It was 
said : " In the coming age the saints shall raise 
the dead as Elias did. . . . What * dead ? ' * Pros- 
elytes.'" The language of Jesus continues this 
Jewish usage : "Let the dead bury their dead ; " 
**The dead shall hear the voice of the Son of 
God." Hence we naturally infer that when he 
said to the twelve, "Raise the dead," he meant 
" make proselytes." The process of translating 
the Gospel from Eastern metaphor and poetry into 
Greek prose might easily give rise to hypothesis 
of miracles where no miracle was intended. That 
we find in parallel passages one gospel saying 
that Jesus " healed," while another says that he 
"taught," suggests that the healing is a misun- 
derstanding of a word intended to mean " spiritual 
healing" or "teaching." Thus in Matt xiv, 14, 
we read, " And he came forth, and saw a great 
multitude, and he had compassion on them, and 
healed their sick." The same incident is thus re- 
ferred to in Mark vi, 34 : " And he came forth 
and saw a great multitude, and he had compassion 
on them, because they were as sheep not having a 
shepherd: and he began to teach them many 
things" (compare also Mark x, i, with Matt 
xix, 2). In the parable of the sower, in quoting 
Isa. vi, 9, 10, Matthew has, " Lest I should heal 

them ; " Mark^ " Lest their sins should be for- 


Christian Science and its Problems 

given." In the charge to the disciples, which 
Mrs. Eddy, without warrant, joins with the great 
commission, Jesus says, "Heal the sick; freely 
ye have received, freely giva" As they had 
freely received spiritual life, so they were to im- 
part it Evidently it was not literal disease that 
they were sent to cure. Thus we may infer that 
^hen great multitudes are spoken of as healed at 
a time it was spiritual cure that was effected.* 

The spiritual work of Jesus Christ, therefore, 
demands primary attention. The healing miracles 
were numerous enough to confirm his claims to 
divinity, but not sufficiently numerous to over- 
shadow his spiritual purpose. They show the 
comprehensiveness of Christ's conception of sal- 
vation. He was thus the pioneer of Christian 
philanthropy and of every movement that aimed at 
social amelioration. They show that the scope of 
the kingdom of God covers all that relates to the 
well-being of man, that temporal interests are to 
be considered as well as eternal interests, that 
social salvation is a part of the redemptive plan. 
But while they teach us that Christ was not an 
ultra spiritualist, there is no evidence that he came 
to establish a dispensation of ** miraculous" heal- 
ing of disease. That the apostles practiced the 
healing of the sick in his name would be a con- 
vincing apology for the Gospel in a time of stress 

1 Edwin Abbott, in The New Wbrld^ September, 1896. 


The Philosophy of Christian Science 

and an emergent substitute for medical methods 
which were then unknown. The apostle, how- 
ever, gives us a great law that applies in physical 
as well as spiritual sickness : " Work out your 
own salvation, for it is he that worketh in you." 
God works in us, but he does not override our 
personality. " We are workers together with 
God." By the exercise of our own minds we 
must find the means of cure through which God 
works in the overthrow of disease. The way of 
life is divinely ordained. We must come back to 
nature and by nature's laws ascend to spiritual 

manhood and physical health. 


The Cures 

The Cures 


The Ctifcs 

T f OW far back the belief in demoniacal posses- 
J ^ sion extends it is difficult to say, but the 
devil has long come in for a very large share of 
the blame for our human sicknessea A few 
years ago a natural cause of disease was as little 
understood as a natural method of cure. Hence 
the priestly class was early and long and in- 
timately connected with the healing art, and for 
centuries the practice of medicine was regarded 
as unfriendly to religion. Even the canon law 
of the Roman Church long declared the precepts 
of medicine contrary to divine knowledge. 
Relics came to be regarded as possessed of mar- 
velous curative powers, and were so extensively 
used that " enormous revenues flowed into vari- 
ous monasteries and churches in all parts of 
Europe." From this source a great demand 
arose for amulets and charms, which was a rever- 
sion to heathen fetichism. In 1471 Pope Paul 
II expatiated to the Church on the efficacy of a 
fetich, which consisted of a piece of wax from the 
paschal candles, stamped with the figure of a 
lamb and consecrated to the pope. This was 
recommended to preserve men from fire, ship- 
wreck, tempest, lightning, hail, as well as in assist- 


Christian Science and its Problems 

ing women in childbirth. Relics and fetiches now 
became very common, and the scientific study of 
medicine was discouraged. 

The warfare offered by the Church authorities! 
to the study of medicine was relentless and bitter. ' 
Supernatural means of cure were so abundant it 
seemed irreligious to employ natural means. 
Hence St Bernard declared that monks who took 
medicine were guilty of conduct unbecoming re- 
ligion. " Even the school of Salerno was held in 
aversion by multitudes of strict churchmen, since 
it prescribed rules for diet, thereby indicating a 
belief that diseases arise from natural causes and 
not from the malice of the devil." 

The pursuit of anatomical studies, so necessary 
to a scientific system of medicine, was long and 
bitterly opposed. It was unlawful to meddle 
with the bodies of the dead, an inheritance of 
pagan civilizations, as, for example, in Egypt the 
embalmer was regarded as accursed. Again, it 
was insisted that mutilating the body might in- 
jure its final resurrection ; and finally it was an- 
nounced that the Church of Rome, which has 
caused a greater spilling of innocent blood than 
any other organization, " abhors the shedding of 
blood." Thus the battle raged between science 
and superstition. When at last medicines were 
tolerated those only were allowed that bore the 

divine sign or signature, as it was called. Hence 


The Cures 

it was held that " bloodroot, on account of its red 
juice, was good for the blood ; liverwort, having 
a leaf like the liver, cures diseases of the liver ; 
eyebright, being marked with a spot like an eye, 
cures diseases of the eye; celandine, having a 
yellow juice, cures jaundice; bugloss, resembling 
a snake's head, cures snake bite; red flannel, 
looking like blood, cures blood tiiints, and there- 
fore rheumatism ; bear's grease, being taken from 
an animal thickly covered with hair, is recom- 
mended to persons fearing baldness." In surgery 
the Church also had its remedies : " The applica- 
tion of various ordures relieved fractures ; the 
touch of the hangman cured sprains ; the breath 
of a donkey expelled poison ; friction with a dead 
man's tooth cured toothacha" * 

The cure of diseases by relics, charms, and su- 
perstitious remedies was as remarkable as any 
cures effected by Christian Science. The relics 
of St Rosalia had for ages cured diseases and 
warded off epidemics, and Professor Buckland's 
discovery that they were the bones of a goat in 
no way interfered with their magical powers. 
Long was the sacred spring connected with the 
Cathedral of Trondhjem, famed for its healing 
efficacy, while angel voices, issuing from the ad- 
jacent walls, cheered the sufferer to believe him- 
self cured. The restoration of this cathedral has 

* Warfare of Science with Theology^ voL ii, pp. 89, 40. 



Christian Science and its Problems 

uncovered the speaking tubes used by these 
voices, which are now known to have been far 
from angelic, but the cures were no less real. As 
early as the eleventh century what was known as 
the royal touch began to be practiced in England 
under Edward the Confessor. This was supposed 
to be peculiarly efficacious for epilepsy and scrof- 
ula, the latter being consequently known as the 
king's evil. There is overwhelming testimony 
to the reality of these cures, the best authorities 
being witnesses. Charles II touched nearly one 
hundred thousand persons, and the outlay for 
gold medals, issued to the afflicted on these oc- 
casions, rose in some years as high as ten thou- 
sand pounds. " John Brown, surgeon in ordinary 
to his majesty and to St Thomas's Hospital, and 
author of many learned works on surgery and 
anatomy, published accounts of sixty cures due 
to the touch of this monarch." ' 

Christian Science enjoys no solitary distinction 
as a divine curative agency. The Roman Catholic 
Church can point to innumerable cures effected 
during the ages by relics and shrines. Lourdes is 
in full operation to-day, with a host of witnesses 
to its healing power. Stacks of crutches are left 
annually at the shrine of St Anne de Beaupre, 
in Canada. Relics are scattered all over the world, 
with witnesses everywhere who have been healed. 

> Warfare of Science^ vol. ii, p. 46. 


The Cures 

" Divine Healing," a system of Protestant faith 
cure, has also its marvels to tell — men and 
women cured of rheumatism, dyspepsia, spinal 
diseases, typhoid fever, and numerous other mal- 
adies. A church of this faith in Chicago issues 
weekly a paper, called Leaves of Healing^ filled 
with testimonies confirming the claims of the 
leaders of the movement that it is the only 
divinely approved way to recover lost health. 
Spiritism also comes in for its share of healing 
marvels. A tumbler of water is changed by 
spirit agency into a tonic, an emetic, a cathartic, 
or an anodyne, as the case requires. Again, the 
witnesses and converts are numerous. Inde- 
pendent administrators of supernatural curative 
power travel about the country followed by long 
trains of enthusiastic believers, the credentials 
of their ministry. Thousands in Denver, relieved 
from the thraldom of disease, lifted their voices 
in praise of Francis Schlatter. He simply 
touched the afflicted, or in some instances only a 
handkerchief brought to him from the bedside of 
the sick, and at once the poor sufferer began to 
feel the thrill of returning health. The craze for 
this barbarous treatment of disease is satisfied 
with anything so that scientific medicine is kept 
out of the case. A woman brings six reliable 
witnesses into court to prove that a compound of 

red earth and bull pups is a specific for " terri- 


Christian Science and its Problems 

ble ailments." A Negro woman in New York 
works wonders with " grease taken from the tail 
of a black cat that had died with its throat cut" 
The more ignorant the worker, and the more^; 
unreasonable the methods, the more satisfactory 

J the results. Anything to get away from the use 

: of our God-given intelligenca It is assumed that 
the exercise of the human mind in the course of 
man^s experience on earth has in no way increased 
its knowledge or its capacity. If a primitive 
man with his thick skull and coat of hair could 
be raised from the dead, he would be the best 
doctor of all. In lieu of him we have the faith 
doctor in his chameleon forms. 

Mrs. Eddy claims that the difference between 
her system and all others is the difference be- 
tween faith and understanding. Faith may 
make a very good beginning in the healing art, 
she says, but it should lead on to understanding, 
which is Christian Science.* If by understand- 
ing Mrs. Eddy means her philosophy, we have 
seen that it is error. If she means that Christian 

i' Science does not depend on faith in the treatment 
of disease, her statement is misleading. The first 

; and last thing she requires of the sick is faitL 
There must first be perfect quiescenca Every 
opposition of the mind must be hushed into 
silenca She affirms that matter has no real exist- 

* Science and Healthy p. 198. 





The Cures 

ence, that even the body is only a false belief of 
mortal mind, and therefore no disease of the body 
is possible. This principle of the system is care- 
fully expounded to the patient He is expected 
to acquiesce — that is, to have faith — though it be 
against every deliverance of sense and reason. If 
he protests, he is soothed into a passive state, 
and urged to hold his mind in the attitude of de- 
nying the possible existence of disease. For 
half an hour the patient and the healer remain 
silent and passive ; the patient's faith meanwhile 
has grown stronger, and at the end of the seance 
he is ready to affirm that he feels better. When 
the patient comes to the healer with the affirma- 
tion of his skepticism in the system he is informed 
that Christian Science requires no faith; no difEer- 
ence what he believes, he can be cured. Bright- 
ening with hope, he submits to the treatment, 
" full of the faith that he is to be healed without 
faith." ' 

All systems of mental healing seem to come 
under a common law, which may probably be 
derived from the study of hypnotism. There is 
resident in the mind a marvelous power over the 
functions and sensations of the body. Since the 
time of St Francis of Assisi numerous instances 
of stigmatization are recorded in the lives of the 
saints. Dr. Carpenter, in his Mental Physiol- 

* Hudson, Law of Psychic Phenomena^ p. 160. 
(7) 97 

Christian Science and its Problems 

ogy^ p. 689, gives a well-authenticated instance : 
" The case of Louise Lateau has undergone a 
scrutiny so careful on the part of medical men 
determined to find out the deceit, if such could 
exist, that there seems no adequate reason for 
doubting its genuineness. This young Belgian 
peasant had been the subject of an exhausting ill- 
ness, from which she recovered rapidly after re- 
ceiving the sacrament; a circumstance which 
obviously made a strong impression on her mind- 
Soon afterward blood began to issue every Friday 
from a spot in her left side ; in the course of a few 
months similar bleeding spots established them- 
selves on the front and back of each hand and on 
the upper surface of each foot, while a circle of 
small spots formed on the forehead ; and the hem- 
orrhage from these recurred every Friday, some- 
times to a considerable amount About the same 
time fits of * ecstasy ' began to recur, commenc- 
ing every Friday, between eight and nine A. M., 
and ending about six p. M., interrupting her in 
conversation, in prayer, or in manual occupation." 
When she recovered she remembered distinctly 
what had passed through her mind during the 
"ecstasy." She had witnessed the passion, and 
" minutely described the cross and the vestments, 
the wounds, and the crown of thorns about the 
head of the Saviour." 

What the power of the mind is that produces 


The Cures 

! this remarkable phenomenon we do not know, but 
1 it is claimed for hypnotism that it can be evoked 
i under proper suggestion. Thus M. Bourru put a 
patient into the somnambulistic condition and 
gave him the following suggestion : " At four 
o'clock this afternoon, after the hypnosis, you 
will come into my office, sit down in the arm- 
chair, cross your arms upon your breast, and 
your nose will begin to bleed. At the hour ap- 
pointed the young man did as directed. Several 
drops of blood came from the left nostril" 

"On another occasion the same investigator 
traced the patient's name on both his forearms 
with the dull point of an instrument Then 
when the patient was in the somnambulistic con- 
dition he said: * At four o'clock this afternoon 
you will go to sleep, and your name will appear 
written on your arms in letters of blood.' He 
was watched at four o'clock, and seen to fall 
asleep. On the left arm the lettei-s stood out in 
bright-red relief, and in several places there were 
drops of blood." 

" Dr. Mabille, director of the insane asylum 
at Laford, near Rochelle, a former pupil of Bern- 
hiem, of excellent standing, repeated the experi- 
ment made upon this subject after he was 
removed to the asylum, and confirmed it He 
obtained instant hemorrhage over a determined 

region of the body. He also induced an attack 


Christian Science and its Problems 

of spontaneous somnambulism, in which the pa- 
tient, doubting his personality, so to speak, sug- 
gested to himself the hemorrhagic stigmata on 
the arm, thus repeating the marvelous phenomena 
of the famous stigmatized autosuggestionist, 
Louise Lateau."* 

These cases show the susceptibility of the 
mind to suggestion, and the control it exercises, 
when in a hypnotic state, over the organic func- 
tions ; a conclusion arrived at by Bemheim and 
other students of the subject This profound 
mental power is now being turned by physicians 
to therapeutic purposes. Neurasthenia, neural- 
gia, rheumatism, insomnia, traumatic spine, mor- 
phia-mania, and other drug habits readily yield 
to this treatment Dr. Cocke mentions a case of^ 
spinal irritation caused by a railroad accident 
He says : " The patient was hypnotized in ten 
minutes. Suggestions were made to him while 
in that condition that his spine would no longer 
be sore. He was told that he could walk well 
At the same time I told him that I would give 
him a piece of metal that was magnetized, and 
that every time he felt the symptoms of disease 
during the day he would receive a strong elec- 
tric shock from the metal. 

" I took an aluminium pocket-piece from my 
pocket which was sent to me as an advertise- 

1 Bernheim, Siiffgestive Therapeutics^ pp. 86, 87. 


The Cures 

ment from some firm, and puncliing some holes 
through it with my knife, bound it on the side 
of his shirt next his skin. I suggested that, 
when he was awaking from the hypnotic state, 
he would go immediately down stairs and get 
me a glass of water, and would not use his 
crutches. He had not taken a step without 
them for five yeara I then commanded him to 
wake up. He did so, began to move around 
restlessly, complained of the heat, and said, 
* Would you like a glass of water? * Eeceiving 
an affirmative answer, he rose and went down stairs 
without the crutches, to the amazement of his 
family, walking perfectly well. He brought the 
water up, complained of headache and drowsi- 
ness, and I again hypnotized him, and told him 
that these symptoms would pass off, and that he 
would feel jolly. Again he was awakened and 
his whole manner changed. He was lively and 
walked around the room with ease. He slept 
five hours that night, and in two weeks resumed 
his business, and has been perfectly well ever 

Professor Bemheim, in his work on Suggestive 
Therapeutics, says: "Since 1882 I have experi- 
mented with the suggestive method which I have 
seen used by M. Liebault, though timidly at first, 
and without any confidence. To-day it is daily 

used in my clinic; I practice it before my 


Christian Science and its Problems 

students ; perhaps no day passes in which I do 
not show them some functional trouble, pain, 
paresis, uneasiness, insomnia, either moderated 
or instantly suppressed by suggestion. 

" Here is a man twenty-six years old, a work- 
man in the foundries. For a year he has ex- 
perienced a painful feeling of constriction over- 
the epigastrium, also a pain in the corresponding 
region in the back, which was the result of an 
effort made in bending an iron bar. The sensa- 
tion is continuous, and increases when he has 
worked for some hours. For six months he has 
been able to sleep only by pressing his epigas- 
trium with his hand. I hypnotize him. In the 
first seance I can induce only simple drowsiness ; 
he wakes spontaneously ; the pain continues. I 
hypnotize him a second time, telling him that he 
will sleep more deeply, and that he will remem- 
ber nothing when he wakes. Catalepsy is not 
present ; I wake him in a few minutes ; he does 
not remember that I spoke to him, that I assured 
him that the pain had disappeared. It had com- 
pletely disappeared ; he no longer feels any con- 
striction. I do not know whether it has reap- 
peared." * 

It must be remembered that the hypnotic state 
may exist in different degrees. It is not in all 
cases necessary that sleep should be induced. A 

^ Bemheim, Suggetiive TherapeutieSf p. 206. 


The Cures 

person may be susceptible to hypnotic suggestion 
who is conscious of no change from his normal 
condition. The attention needs only to be so held 
that the impression may be made deeply upon 
the mind. It is very well known that simple 
suggestion under favorable conditions may act 
beneficially on the health. A cheei-ful home, 
pleasant and hopeful companions, useful occupa- 
tion, may do much in some cases to effect a cure. 
Association with a strong and healthy mind is a 
tonic to the weak. Says Dr. Cocke : " The psychic 
impression which one person makes upon an- 
other is, at the same time, the most subtle and 
the most powerful sociological factor that exists. 
Is it not reasonable, then, that association with 
those who are congenial to us should prove a 
stimulus which tends to restore health? " If; 
then, the attention is held, and a profound ther- 
apeutic suggestion is produced in the mind, the 
conditions of hypnotism are met. 

Webster defines telepathy thus: "The S3rm- 
pathetic affection of one mind by the thoughts, 
feeling, or emotions of another at a distance, 
without communication through the ordinary 
channels of sensation.'* If, now, this power of 
the mind is real (and the facts of telepathy are 
as conclusive as the facts of Christian Science), 
then absent treatment by suggestion is possible. 

The mind of the healer may travel a hundred 



Christian Science and its Problems 

miles to influence the mind of the sick with 
which it is en rapport Mr. Hudson claims that 
he has treated many cases successfully in this 
way. Eheumatism, neuralgia, dyspepsia, sick 
headache, torpidity of the liver, bronchitis, par- 
tial paralysis, have yielded to absent treament* 

Christian Science can produce nothing more 
wonderful than the cures of hypnotism, and there 
is such a close resemblance between their meth- 
ods that we have every reason to believe that 
they both come under the same law. 

First, faith brings the two minds, that of the 
healer and that of the patient, en rapport. 
Whether or not the Christian Scientist will admit 
it, she cannot and will not dispense with faith. 
Herein the attention is secured ; and, second, a 
therapeutic suggestion is made to the mind. 
The healer insists that disease is a false belief of 
mortal mind. The patient is to repeat in his 
mind the affirmation of health. Silence is re- 
quired, while the attention is fixed on the propo- 
sition that matter is nothing; the mind cannot be 
sick. The hypnotic state ensuea The healer, 
oblivious of all else, seeks to impart the sugges- 
tion of healtL Third, the first seance usually 
proves only partly successful, which will require 
another sitting, when the cure will be more pro- 
nounced. Even if entirely successful the first 

* Hudsou, Law of Psychic Phenomena^ p. 196. 


The Cures 

time, the suggestion will gradually fade from the 
mind, and the bad feelings will return. This 
the healer calls a relapse into mortal mind. 
Bepeated seances give the suggestion a certain 
vitality, when it is asserted a cure has been 

Hypnotism follows the same steps with the 
same experience. Indeed, all systems of faith 
cure proceed silmilarly, and even the methods 
pursued by barbarians in primitive times often 
have a family likeness to these systema Solomon 
O'Bail, a great medicine man among the Seneca 
Indians, depended little on herbs. While the 
patient sat on the earth before him his lips were 
pressed to a rude flute, the soft music of which 
was intended to exorcise the evil spirits that 
caused the sickness and invoke the aid of the 
great spirit The notes were in the minor key 
and plaintive. The attention of the sufferer was 
fixed, his faith was awakened ; both he and the 
healer believed that a cure was to be effected. The 
suggestion of health was imparted to the hypno- 
tized mind; he recovered. Thus a Seneca In- 
dian became renowned as a healer. He is one of 
a class of primitive men that were forerunners 
of all schools of mental healing, and should be 
r^arded as representative of them. 

But at the point of recovery by Christian 

Science a fact emerges that shows its identity 




Christian Science and its Problems 

with hypnotism. It is well known that adverse 
suggestion brings a relapse in hypnotic treatment. 
The environment of the person must correspond 
with the original suggestion. If he tells of his 
cure in the presence of skeptical friends, their jeers 
and laughter will destroy the suggestion of health. 
Hypnotists cannot successfully cany out their 
experiments in the presence of a skeptical audi- 
ence, especially when the skepticism is open and 
avowed. This is peculiarly marked in the higher 
phases of hypnotic phenomena. Now, the healer 
finds the same difficulty with her patients. They 
return again and again for treatment. They are^ 
warned not to argue, then not to read the news- 
papers, and to be careful of their associations, and 
finally they are advised that mingling with church 
people is fatal There is something Jesuitical in 
this, for the poor invalid was first informed that 
he was not required to leave his Church in order 
to be a Christian Scientist, but he has come now 
to the inevitable end ; he must separate from his 
Church and seek an environment that conspires 
with his faith and with the suggestion that has y 
been made upon his mind by the healer. 

Does the healer ever fail ? It certainly is not 
to his interest to report the failures ; the cures, 
however, are heralded far and wide. But these 
cures cannot be received without question. Was 
the patient really sick ? Has he been restored to 

The Cures 

health ? Are inquiries not answered by mere as- 
sertion? On account of the idiosyncrasies of the 
mind the patient himself is not always a reliable 
witness. In a congregation of Christian Scientists 
there are many cases of well men cured of imagi- 
nary ills and of sick men who imagine themselves 
well The failures are numerous. Many cases of 
death from diphtheria, pneumonia, consumption, 
and childbirth under Christian Science treatment 
are reliably reported. It is not our purpose to 
deny that cures have been effected, but the diffi- 
culty of verifying them must be conceded. 

In his valuable book on Faith Healing Dr. J. 
M. Buckley submits a number of tests of the 
theory of Christian Science. We quote especially 
the following : 

''^Second Test They deny that drugs, per se, 
as taken into the human system, have any 

"Christian Science divests material drugs of 
their imaginary power. . . . The uselessness of 
drugs, the emptiness of knowledge, the nothing- 
ness of matter and its imaginary laws, are appa- 
rent as we rise from the rubbish of belief to the 
acquisition and demonstration of spiritual under- 
standing. . . . When the sick recover by the use 
of drugs, it is the law of a general belief, culmina- 
ting in individual faith that heals, and according 

to this faith will the effect be." — Eddy. 



Christian Science and its Problems 

Surely the mind needs healing that could invent 
the following absurdity : 

" The not uncommon notion that drugs possess 
absolute inherent curative virtues of their own 
involves an error. Arnica, quinine, opium, could 
not produce the effects ascribed to them except by 
imputed virtue. Men think they will act thus on 
the physical system, consequently they do. The 
property of alcohol is to intoxicate ; but if the 
common thought had endowed it simply with a 
nourishing quality like milk, it would produce a 
similar effect A curious question arises about 
the origin of healing virtues, if it be admitted 
that all drugs were originally destitute of them. 
We can conceive of a time in the mental history 
of the race when no therapeutic value was as- 
signed to certain drugs, when in fact, it was not 
known that they possessed any. How did it 
come to pass that common thought, or any 
thought, endowed them with healing virtue, in 
the first place ? Simply in this way : Man find- 
ing himself unprotected, and liable to be hurt by 
the elements in the midst of which he lived, for- 
got the true source of healing, and began to seek 
earnestly for material remedies of disease and 
wounds. The desire for something led to exper- 
iments ; and with each trial there was associated 
the hope that the means applied would prove 

efficacioua Then what was at first an earnest 


The Cures 

hope came at length to be a belief ; and thus, by 
gradual steps, a belief in the contents of the en- 
tire pharmacopoeia was established." — Marslon, 

It is true that in many cases the effect of a\ 
medicine is to be attributed entirely to the imagi- 
nation, or to the belief that it will have such and 
such effects ; but the statement of such extreme 
positions as these shows the irrationality of the 
theories upon which they are based. According 
to the above, if it were generally believed that al- 
cohol were unintoxicating, nomishing, and bland 
as milk, it would be an excellent article with 
which to nourish infants ; and, on the other hand, 
if it were generally believed that milk were intox- 
icating, all the influences of alcohol would be 
produced upon those who drank it If the pub- 
lic could only be educated to believe alcohol to 
be nourishing, the entire mammalian genus might 
be nursing their offspring upon alcohol with 
equally good results. No insane asylum can fur- / 
nisli a more transparent delusion. y- 

That drugs produce effects upon animals has 
been demonstrated beyond the possibility of con- 
tradiction, and that, when the animals did not 
know that they were taking drugs; and small 
doses have produced not the slightest effect, while 
large doses — the animals in each case not know- 
ing that they were taking medicines — have pro- 
duced great effect, and do so with uniformity. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

Also the eflEect of medicines upon idiots and un- 
conscious infants is capable of exact demonstra- 

Allied to the effect of drugs is that of poisons^ 
almost every drug having the effect of a poison if 
taken in excess. Some poisons, however, are of 
such nature that the smallest possible dose may 
be attended with fatal results. In the case of an- 
imals, poisons introduced into the system without 
the knowledge of the animals do their work 
effectually. Strychnine carefully introduced into 
a piece of meat so small that a cat will swallow it 
whole will in a very short time show its effects. 
The instinct of the animal will cause its rejection 
if there be the slightest possibility of perceiving 
it ; but if sufficient means be taken to keep the 
animal from knowing that it is taking anything 
except meat, it will swallow the meat, and the 
poison will do its work. 

These facts are admitted by the advocates of 
Christian Science and mind cure, and the lunacy 
of their theories is seen in the manner in which 
they attempt to account for the effects. 

" If a dose of poison is swallowed through mis- 
take, the patient dies, while physician and patient 
are expecting favorable results. Did belief cause 
this death ? Even so, and as directly as if the 
poison had been intentionally taken. . . . The 

few who think a drug harmless, where a mistake 


The Cures 

has been made in the prescription, are unequal to 
the many who have named it poison, and so the 
majority opinion governs the result." — Eddy. 

"It is said that arsenic kills; but it would be 
very difficult for anyone to prove how it kills, 
since persons have had all the symptoms of ar- 
senic poisoning without having taken any arsenic ; 
and, again, persons have taken arsenic and did 
not die. . . . Supposeyou take a child that knows 
nothing about arsenic and administer the usual 
dose ; the child will probably die, but I will show 
you that the arsenic was not the cause of the 
deatL . . . Here you may say, * What had the 
life of the child to do with the action, the child 
not knowing anything about arsenic ? * We will 

* admit that the child was ignorant of the nature of 
poison, but all who are educated in theology and 
materia medica know that it kills ; therefore the 

. thought, although unconscious to the child, was 
hereditary in its life. It is, indeed, a universal 
thought admitted as a fact in every life or soul. 
A thought is a product of life, and is action, and 
this thought, produced and accepted by life, acts 
upon the life of the child and produces uncon- 
sciously a confusion therein. This confusion pro- 
duces a fear ; this fear in the child's life heats the 
blood and causes the first conscious action." — 

" The effects of various experiments with chem- 



Christian Science and its Problems 

icals and medicine upon cats and dogs are 
studied most minutely by distinguished scientific 
men, and the results witnessed published to the 
world, with a presumption of wisdom and pro- 
fundity of learning that carry the conviction to 
most minds that the properties of such drugs and 
their eflEects upon the human system have been 
forever established. And materia medica falls 
back upon these so-called demonstrations of 
science as absolutely indisputable proofs of its 
theoriea Now, it never seems to have occurred 
to them that all the effects witnessed of such ex- 
perimenting might be accounted for on the basis 
of ifwught, and with the view of investigating the 
subject to establish a totally opposite explana- 
tion; and to show that mind acting on matter 
could account for all their facts the following ex- 
periments have been recently made : The object 
of the experiments was a dog, a noble thorough- 
bred, of great sagacity and intelligence. The 
first experiment consisted in conveying commands 
to him entirely through mind. Not a word was 
spokeUj but his mistress would say to him men- 
tally, * Carlo, come here,' or * Carlo, lie down,' 
and although the thought might have to be re- 
peated mentally a number of times, yet it would 
reach him, and sometimes he would respond al- 
most immediately. Second experiment : One day 

his master discovered an appearance to which he 


The Cures 

gave the name mange. All the dogs around were 
having it It was catching. Dr. So-and-so had 
pronounced it mange, and prescribed a mixture 
of sulphur and castor oil, etc., which was to be 
applied externally in such a way that Carlo, in at- 
tempting to remove the preparation with his 
tongue, would get a dose into his system. But 
here the mistress interposed, and insisted that 
Carlo should be subjected wholly to mental treat- 
ment The result was entirely satisfactory. The 
appearance vanished as it came. Again the ex- 
periment of placing Carlo entirely under the in- 
telligence of his master's mind and thoughts for 
a certain period was tried and compared with the 
effects of leaving him wholly under his mistress's 
mind. In the former case he soon exhibited every 
symptom of dyspepsia and indigestion in every 
form, to which the master was subject, and in a 
very marked degree. But under the thought of 
the mistress every symptom and appearance van- 
ished at once. He soon attained a perfection of 
physical condition, which constantly attracted the 
notice of everyone. Experiments of this kind 
were carried- much further, and can be by anyone 
who wishes to test the matter for themselves. In 
all the instances just mentioned the physical con- 
dition of the dog responded to the mind under 
whose influence it chanced to be. Love and fear 

{especially fear) are the most marked characteris- 
es) 113 

Christian Science and its Problems 

tics of the animal mind. The instances are in- 
numerable where the instinct of the animal 
surpasses the reason of man in detecting the 
kindly thought or the thought of harm toward 
itself. When a scientific experimenter gives a 
drug to a dog it is done with a perfect certainty 
in his mind that disorder, derangement of the sys- 
tem, suffering, etc., in some form or another, are 
sure to follow. A fear corresponding to the 
thought of man instantly seizes upon the dog, 
and various results do follow. The experimenter 
notes them down and then proceeds to try his 
drug on dog number two, all the while holding 
in his mind an image of the results of experiment 
number one, expecting to see similar results. In 
all probability he sees them." — SiuarL^ 

Third Test Extraordinary accidents to the 
body. Whatever may be said of the power of 
thought in the production of ordinary disease, 

^Mrs. Stuart in the foregoing passage is only a little more 
absurd than Mrs. Eddy. *' The preference of * mortal mind ' for 
any method creates a demand for it, and the body seems to re- 
quire it. You can even educate a healthy horse so far in physi- 
ology that he will take cold without his blanket ; whereas the 
wild animal, left to his mstincts, sniffs the wind with delight.'' 
The connection of this quotation with what goes before shows 
that the horse does not take cold, in the opinion of Mrs. Eddy, 
because, having been accustomed to the blanket, his system is 
80 weakened that he will take cold without it, but because the 
training of the said horse has been such that he is led to believe 
that if the blanket is not on, he will take cold ! 


The Cures 

the effects of accidents to persons who are en- 
tirely unconscious when they ocxjur, as the sleep- 
ing victims of railroad disasters, are facts which, 
if they do not terminate human life at once, re- 
quire the aid of surgery. 

Mrs, Eddy says : 

" The fear of dissevered bodily members, or a 
belief in such a possibility, is reflected on the 
body in the shape of headache, fractured bones, 
dislocated joints, and so on, as directly as shame 
is seen in the blush rising in the cheek. This 
human error about physical wounds and colics is 
part and parcel of the delusion that matter can 
feel and see, having sensation and substance." 

It is confessed, however, that very little prog- 
ress has been made in this department : 

Christian Science is always the most skillful 
surgeon, but surgery is the branch of its healing 
that will be last demonstrated. However, it is but 
just to say that I have already in my possession 
well-authenticated records of the cure, by mental 
surgery alone, of dislocated hip joints and spinal 

But records, to be well authenticated, require 
more than an assertion. And the records may 
be authentic, and what they contain may never 
have been thoroughly tested. As they affirm 
that "bones have only the substance of thought, 
they are only an appearance to mortal mind ; " if 

Christian Science and its Problems 

their theories be true at all, they should be able to 
rectify every result of accident to the body as 
readily and speedily as diseases originating with- 
in the systena. 

Fifth Test The perpetuation of youth and the 
abolition of death should also be within range of 
these magicians. 

Baldwin, of Chicago, says: 

" Man should grow younger as he grows older ; 
the principle is simple, * As we think so are we * 
is stereotyped. Thoughts and ideas are ever 
striving for external expression. By keeping the 
mind young we have a perfect guarantee for con- 
tinued youthfulness of body. Thought will ex- 
ternalize itself ; thus growing thought will ever 
keep us young. Eeliance on drugs makes the 
mind, consequently the body, prematurely old. 
' This new system will make us younger at seventy 
than at seventeen, for then we will have more of 
' genuine philosophy." 

Mrs. Eddy meets this matter in the style of 
Jules Verne : 
/* " The error of thinking that we are growing old 
and the benefits of destroying that illusion are 
illustrated in a sketch from the history of an 
English lady, published in the London Lancet 
Disappointed in love in early years, she became 
insana She lost all calculation of time. Believ- 
ing that she still lived in the same hour that 


The Cures 

parted her from her lover, she took no note of 
years, but daily stood before the window watch- 
ing for his coming. In this mental state she 
remained young. Having no appearance of age, 
she literally grew no older. Some American 
travelers saw her when she was seventy-four, and 
supposed her a young lady. Not a wrinkle or 
gray hair appeared, but youth sat gently on cheek 
and brow. Asked to judge her age, and being 
unacquainted with her history, each visitor con- 
jectured that she must be under twenty." 

That the above should be adduced as proof of 
anything would be wonderful if the person ad- 
ducing it had not previously adopted a theory 
which supersedes the necessity of demonstration. 
It is important to notice that if the belief had any- 
thing to do with it, this amazing result grew 
from a belief in a falsehood. She did not live in 
the same hour that parted her from her lover ; .. / /h 
she believed that she did, and, according to Mrs. ,^^ /V^ t) 
Eddy, this belief of a falsehood counteracted 
all the ordinary consequences of the flight of 

But the delusion among the insane that they 
are young, that they are independent of time and 
this world, is very common ; and the most pain- 
fully paradoxical sights that I have ever witnessed 
have been men and women, toothless, denuded of 

hair, and with all the signs of age — sans teeth, 



ir tU- 

Christian Science and its Problems 

sa7is eyes, sans taste, sans everything — some of 
them declaring that they were young girls and 
engaged to be married to presidents and kings 
and even to divine beings. These delusions in 
some instances have been fixed for many years. 
I have had more opportunities than were desired 
for conversing with persons of this class. 

Granting the case adduced by Mra Eddy to be 
true, and admitting that the state of the mind 
may have had some effect, it is of no scientific 
importance ; for the number that show no signs 
of age until fifty, sixty, or even seventy years 
have passed is by no means small in the aggre- 
gate; we meet them everywhere. One of the 
most astute observers of human nature, himself 
a physician, solemnly warned a gentleman that if 
he continued to take only four hours' sleep in 
twenty-four, he would die before he was fifty 
years of aga " What do you suppose my age to 
be now ? " said the gentleman. " Thirty," said the 
physician. "I am sixty-nine," was the reply, 
which proved to be the fact 

Mrs. Eddy, not content with this case, con- 
tinues: "I have seen age regain two of the ele- 
ments it had lost, sight and teeth. A lady of 
eighty-five whom I knew had a return of sight. 
Another lady at ninety had new teeth — incisors, 
cuspids, bicuspids, and one molar." Such in- 
stances as these are not uncommon, but are gener- 


The Cures 

ally a great surprise to the persons themselves, 
and unconnected with any delusion as to flight of 
time. They are simply freaks of nature. 

There is a flattening of the eye which comes on 
with advancing years, and necessitates the use 
of glasses. Many persons who have few signs of 
age, retain the color of the cheek, have lost no 
teeth, and whose natural force is not abated, find 
their eyes dim. According to these metaphysi- 
cal healers this is not necessary ; but I have ob- > 
served that a number of them say nothing about 
being themselves compelled to use glasses. 

Much is made of one case of a metaphysical 
healer who, after using glasses fifteen years, 
threw them away, and can now read even in 
the railroad cars without them. Such cases of 
second sight have occurred at intervals always 
and under all systems, and sometimes when the 
progress of old age had been so great that the 
persons had suffered many infirmities, and had 
but a few months left in which to " see as well as 
ever they did in their lives.'' 

Some famous actors and actresses, without the 
use of pigments, dyes, or paints, notwithstanding 
the irregular hours and other accidents of their 
professional life, have maintained an astonishing 
youthfulness of appearance down to nearly three- 
score years and ten. 

John Wesley at seventy-five, according to testi- 


Christian Science and its Problems 

mony indubitable and from a variety of sources, 
not only presented the appearance of a man not 
yet past the prime of life, but, what is more re- 
markable, had the undiminished energy, vivacity, 
melody, and strength of voice which accompany 
youth. Nor at eighty -five had he exhibited much 

In the city of Chicago there died recently a 
professional man, nearly seventy-five years of 
age, whose teeth, complexion, color, hair, voice, 
and mind showed no signs of his being over forty- 
five years of age. Henry Ward Beecher, the 
January before his death, could write to his 
oldest brother that he had no rheumatism, neu- 
ralgia, sleeplessness, or deafness, was not bald, and 
did not need spectacles. 

Meanwhile it is impossible not to suppose that 
the case as described by Mrs. Eddy has been 
greatly exaggerated. That some Americans 
who saw her at the age of seventy-four supposed 
her to be under twenty is to be taken cum grano 

As for death, if the theories of these romantic 
philosophers be true, it should give way : if not 
in every case, at least in some. It is said that 
there are hundreds of persons in Boston who 
believe that Mrs. Eddy will never die. Jo- 
anna Southcott, who arose in England in 1792, 

made many disciples, by some estimated at one 


Christianity and Health 

hundred thousand, who believed that she would 
never die ; but unfortunately for their credulity 
she succumbed to the inevitable decree. 

Christianity and Health. 

When Christian Science insists on love as a 
dominant principle in human life it is so far 
Christian. If the Church of Jesus Christ fails to 
realize love, it is so far unchristian. To the 
Master religion was a life ruled by love. The 
commandments of the Old Testament he con- 
densed into one supreme law : " Thou shalt love 
the Lord thy God with the whole of thy heart, 
soul, and mind ; and thou shalt love thy neigh- 
bor as thyselt" It was this law that directed 
the heroic missionary endeavor and planted the 
germs of social reformation during the first three 
Christian centuries. Just as love led Christ to 
the cross, so it inspired the early Christians to 
the sacrifice of life, counting no gift too costly 
tliat could add to human betterment It was 
the golden cord that bound the primitive Church 
together, and it has left its mementos in hymns 
of praise, in prayers, and in noble apologies 
for the truth, inscribed on parchments, on the 
walls of the catacombs, and, best of all, imbed- 
ded in the benevolent enterprises which it first 

Have we now become mere traditionalists, 


Christian Science and its Problems 

instead of intimate disciples of the Master ? Are 
we so engrossed with a theory of religion that we 
have lost the spirit of love ? If so, we have de- 
generated, and a power of life has parted from 
us without which we are desolate. 

The healing efficacy of love has not only its 
spiritual, but also its physical, application. Chris- 
tianity cannot be limited to a particular zone of 
human life. The salvation of the soul with 
reference to another world is a poor and imper- 
fect substitute for the salvation of men in this 
world. The helpful ministries of Jesus were ad- 
dressed to the whole man. "He fertilized hu- 
man nature to its farthest borders." He had life 
for the soul, truth for the mind, and health for 
the body. 

We are not surprised, therefore, to discover 
that Christianity has its medicinal value. Love 
is health -giving. When a soul escapes its narrow 
f cell, and goes abroad in God*s world profoundly 
stirred with human interests, when it learns ten- 
derness and sympathy, and is employed in minis- 
tries of good, with the attention diverted from 
self, the restorative powers of nature are given 
freedom of action. The direction of the atten- 
tion is of great importance to health. "The 
highest medical authorities agree that attention 
strongly directed to any part of the body will 
produce physical change. If the attention is 


Christianity and Health 

centered on the stomach, the digestion will 
suffer; if on the liver, that will become de- 
ranged. The vascularity of bodily organs and 
caliber of the blood vessels can thus be made to 
undergo a change. In short, the physical aspects 
of attention are strongly marked." * Selfishness 
is thus productive of disease and often prevents 
cure. It magnifies every ailment, real or imagi- 

" I know a patient," says Dr. Cocke, " who is 
wealthy, who has everything in the world to live 
for, social position, kind friends — everything. 
He has the opportunity to do good and to be of 
use in every way. He gives his money freely, 
but he cannot give his better self, because it does 
not exist It is impossible to entertain him with 
anything. Books for him have no charm, the 
theater no fascination. Music and poetry do 
not reach him. The ambition to be successful 
in business is not his, and all in the world that 
he cares for, all that he cuddles and tends, are his 
own feelings and complaints. He cannot be 
reached even through the passions. Food and 
drink have for him no temptations. He lives in 
the world, bored by the things which should in- 
terest him and make his life worth living. He 
has tasted of everything. He has drunk of all 
the good things of life. He has traveled, and yet 

* Halleck, Education of the Central Jfervoua System^ p. 66. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

the world has made practically no impression upon 
him. Loving friends have nurtured and cared 
for him, and he gives back only cold expressions 
of love for their paina He does what he con- 
ceives to be his duty, and, in the ordinary sense 
of the word, he does it well. He provides for the 
poor, he attends church, he is connected with a 
great many benevolent enterprises, but love, the 
one thing that makes life worth living, he has 
never felt" 

" In him ye are made full." Thus speaks the 
apostle, and experience as well as philosophy 
confirm his dictum. Even our personality is 
realized in the personality of God, and in him 
only can we attain perfection. The more closely i 
we are allied to God the more perfectly we live. 
Perhaps our failure is in realizing the indwelling 
presence of God. Is God a great being in some 
distant part of the universe, operating in our lives 
only by his omniscience and power to control 
"second causes? " Or have we come to under-^\ 
stand that " the power that rolls in the sea, that 
shines in sun and stars, that stands fast in the 
mountains, that utters its grace in the flower, 
that breaks into melody in the note of the bird, 
and that sweeps round man as physical environ- 
ing force, is the power of the infinite will?"^. 
This is the immanent God, " in whom we live, and 

move, and have our being ; " " who worketh in 


Christianity and Health 

us both to will and to work," and hence, without 
whom in good will life is disharmony and dis- 
ease; but when we are instinct with him ^ the 
deeper currents of our life divinely impelled, as 
are the movements of the tides or the courses of 
the stars, we are exalted, buoyant, resistless. 
y Touched by such a conception of God, the life 
currents course with new vigor. Schleiermacher 
witnesses to the exaltation it imparted to his en- 
tire being : " Unenfeebled will I bring my spirit 
down to life's closing period ; never shall the 
genial courage of life desert me ; what gladdens 
me now shall gladden me ever ; my imagination 
shall continue lively and my will unbroken, and 
nothing shall force from my hand the magic key 
which opens the mysterious gates of the upper 
world, and the fire of love within me shall never 
be extinguished. I will not look upon the 
dreaded weakness of age; I pledge myself to 
supreme contempt of every toil which does not 
concern the true end of my existence, and I vow 
to remain forever young. . . . The spirit which 
impels man forward shall never fail me, and 
the longing which is never satisfied with what 
has been, but ever goes forth to meet the 
new, shall still be mina The glory I shall 
seek is to know that my aim is infinite, 
and yet never to pause in my course. ... I 

shall never think myself old until my work is 


Christian Science and its Problems 

done, and that work will not be done while I 
know and will what I ought ... To the end of 
life I am determined to grow stronger and livelier 
by every self-improvement . . . When the light 
of my eyes shall fade, and the gray hairs shall 
sprinkle my blonde locks, my spirit shall still 
smile. No event shall have power to disturb my 
heart; the pulse of my inner life shall remain 
fresh while life endures." * 

This is communion with God in which we par- 
take of life — blessed, eternal Ufa " This is eternal 
life," says Christ, not will be ; a present posses- 
sion, extending from the center to the periphery 
' . of human existence. All life, when once we have 
truly entered into it, is eternal life, and is good 
even in its darker experienca It is the plan of 
God; it is the order of nature. "When ones 
thinks of life in man as one thing and life in 
God as another he has lost the key to the science 
of lifa Nothing deserves the name of life in us 
that cannot be affirmed of God. Life in the soul 
is the tide of the divine ocean flowing as it has 
opportunity through the narrow channels of 
human natura"' Christ came into our world 
that we might " know God " in this intimate 
sense in all spheres of the divine self-disclosure. 
" I am come that ye might have life, and that ye 

* Quoted in Continuity of Christian Thought^ p. 400. 

• Th« Mind of the Master, p. 76. 


Christianity and Health 

might have it more abundantly." Why, then, 
should we mistrust life ? Why not live in God's 
world as though we believed in God and in all 
things that God hath made ? Even here unbelief 
is disease, for it is a rupture with nature. He 
only is normal who lovingly confides in nature. 
This is health. Doubt antagonizes nature and is 
followed by abnormality and death. 

" He is able to save," but how? Not by some 
power extraneous to nature. Not by the viola- 
tion or suspension of the forces or laws of nature. 
We have brought confusion and uncertainty by 
emphasizing the "supernatural." We have cre- 
ated a realm for God and a realm for the devil. 
We have divided time and place into " secular" 
and "holy." We have looked for signs and 
wonders to supply the place of our ignorance 
and to cover our sin. We have expected the 
course of nature to be supplemented by demon- 
strations of omnipotence. 

But the miracle, if we may use a word for 
which we find no equivalent in the original text, 
consists in leading us back to nature, in persuad- 
ing us that nature is a safe guide. This Jesus 
did. He led us to see that all is nature, whether 
in the spiritual or material world, because all is 
under God, who is not lawless. This is true, 
though a law of necessity hold in the one 

and a law of personal freedom in the other. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

Wonders and signs there may be, violations of 
nature never. He exalted nature. His memoirs 
are not a record of miracles. His own life was 
supremely natural By no miracle did he pro- 
vide the necessities of life. He labored at the 
carpenter's bench and ate the bread of human 
toil. He trod the dusty roads of life like other 
men. His whole divine life was a submission to 
nature in birth and joy and sorrow and death. 
He declared that we must be horn again ; by a 
process as natural as that of human generation 
we must be restored again to life ; that we must 
exercise the natural power of love ; that in fol- 
lowing him we must die for the truth's saka 
Thus we are saved by nature in accordance with 
divine law. "Go thou and sin no more;'' re- 
stored to peace with thyself and God, preserve a 
life of harmony ; violate no more even the least 
of nature's laws; be as true to nature as the 
flower which God arrays in beautiful garments, 
and enter on the endless power of a perfect life. 
" First the blade, then the ear, then the full com 
in the ear." Thus Jesus brings us back to nature. 
Salvation by the power of nature, which is the 
immanent God and the immanent Christ, is not 
confined to the religious nor to the moral life. It 
is perfect and full ; it is mental and moral and 
physical and social and political. It is curative 

to our sicknesses, and is even the most effective 


Christianity and Health 

known germicide. It is destructive to all zymotic 
diseases. Fai^hjnja^ilirfiy- not in incantations 
and charms and relics and sorceries — this it is 
that health. 

Mrs. Eddy informs us that hygiene and sani- 
tary science are without efficiency.* Nature 
affirms the contrary. Wesley declared his faith 
in nature when he said, " Cleanliness is near akin 
to godliness." We have learned that germs of 
disease may float in the very air, and that epi- 
demics may be conveyed in water. It is not faith 
in nature that ignores these facts ; it is contempt 
for nature. It is akin to ascribing disease to the 
maledictions of Providence, and to prayer for de- 
liverance that can only be secured by the shovel 
The Mohammedans in Bombay offer long inter- 
cessory prayers that God may abate the terrible 
plague, but the British are securing immunity 
from its perils by cleansing the huts, burning or 
disinfecting the clothing, and isolating the sick. 
Now let Christian Science compete in India with 
sanitation and hygiene. 

" In the latter half of the seventeenth century 
the annual mortality in London is estimated at 
not less than eighty in a thousand; about the 
middle of this century it stood at twenty-four in a 
thousand ; in 1889 it stood at less than eighteen in 
a thousand ; and in many parts the most recent 

1 Science aiid Hedit\ pp. 68, 66. 
(9) 129 

Christian Science and its Problems 

statistics show that it has been brought down 
to fourteen or fifteen in a thousand. A quarter 
of a century ago the death rate from disease in 
the Koyal Guards at London was twenty in a thou- 
sand ; in 1888 it had been reduced to six in a 
thousand. ... In the old Indian army it had 
been sixty -nine in a thousand, but of late it had 
been brought down first to twenty and finally to 
fourteen. The Public Health Act having been 
passed in 1875, the death rate in England among 
men fell, between 1871 and 1880, more than four 
in a thousand, and among women more than six 
in a thousand. In the decade between 1851 and 
1860 there died of disease attributable to defective 
drainage and impure water over four thousand 
persons in every million throughout England. 
These numbers have declined until, in 1888, there 
died less than two thousand in every million. 
The most striking diminution of the deaths from 
such causes was found in 1891, in the case of 
typhoid fever, that diminution being fifty per 
cent As to the scourge which, next to plagues 
like the black death, was fomierly the most 
dreaded — smallpox — there died of it in London 
during the year 1890 just one person. Drainage 
in Bristol reduced the death rate by consumption 
from 4.4 to 2.8, at Cardiiff from 8.47 to 2.81, and 
in all England and Wales from 2.67 in 1851 to 

1.55 in 1888. 


Christianity and Health 

" What can be accomplished by better sanita- 
tion is also seen to-day by a comparison between 
the death rate among the children outside and in- 
side the charity schools. The death rate among 
those outside in 1881 was twelve in a thousand ; 
while inside, where the children were under san- 
itary regulations maintained by competent au- 
thorities, it has been reduced first to eight, then 
four, and finally less than three in a thousand." * 

We have here an illustration of nature's power 
to aid us when we seek her. Eudiments of a 
gospel of mercy are to be found in nature, and 
the healing art has its place among them. Scien- 
tific medicine is a thing of recent years, and 
while theological prejudice did much to retard 
its early growth, the time has now come when 
the student of nature's mysteries is free to pursue 
his investigations. Already the results are star- 
tling. A well-conducted hospital is a demonstra- 
tion that modem medicine is a genuine curative 
agency. He who observes the process by which 
a body torn and broken into pulp is shaped and 
fashioned again by the surgeon's skillful hand, 
the rapid healing by the use of antiseptics, and 
the restoration to health by remedies judiciously 
applied as aids to nature, cannot say, "This 
might better have been done by the orisons of 
priests or by some theurgy of faith." 

* White, Warfare of JScimee^ vol. ii, p. 91. 


Christian Science and its Problems 

The modem physician must have wide culture 
and a well-balanced mind, with the resources of 
nature at his command. He has become an in- 
dispensable factor of society. Nothing could be 
more irrational than the substitution of self -treat- 
ment or quackery for the services of a skillful 
physician in a case of real need. And yet self- 
treatment is one of the most common evils. It 
is said that more than 10,000 men, who receive col- 
lectively more than $4,000,000 per annum in sal- 
aries and wages, are engaged in manufacturing pat- 
ent medicinea "We surely have faith in drugs, and 
it stands as an index of our indolence and of our 
lack of faith in Ufa We neglect the laws of life ; 
we forget that health demands simple fellowship 
with nature ; we set upon a course of defiance of 
nature, maintaining ourselves with drugs. Little 
wonder we break down the defenses of health 
and bring remedies into ill-repute. When we 
have exhausted the pharmacopoeia the same in- 
dolence and aversion to nature leads us to hunt 
for some magic means of cure, some necromancy, 
theurgy, some fountain of life. Alas ! in the end 
it is futile; there is but one way, we must re- 
turn to nature as obedient children ; we must be- 
lieve in nature and do the works of faitL 

There is a passage often quoted from Paracel- 
sus, as follows: "Whether the object of your 
faith be false or real, you will, nevertheless, ob- 


Christianity and Health 

tain the same effects. Thus, if I believe in St 
Peter's statue as I would have believed in St 
Peter himself, I would obtain the same effects 
that I would have obtained from St Peter ; but 
that is superstition. Faith, however, produces 
miracles ; whether it be false or true faith, it will 
always produce the same wonders." The truth 
of this observation is confirmed by the modem 
miracle worker. A true faith, however, like a 
faith in God, is better than a false faith, though 
many of the results may be similar. A false 
faith can never exalt character, and hence cannot 
be ethically best for the body. Hence it is im- 
portant that in the search for an object of faith 
that will heal our sicknesses we should not adopt 
one that will degrade the souL 

" And he did not many works there because 
of their unbelief." The want of faith cribbed 
the power of the Master. Much as suffering men 
needed him, the subtle bond of union, the medium 
of life, was wanting. No mighty works, whether 
material or spiritual, have ever been wrought 
without faith. There is a limit to " understand- 
ing," but " faith is the evidence of things unseen." 

Faith in ourselves is indispensable, and it 
should arise from the acquisition of self-knowl- 
edge, and because we have learned that man is 
the crowning product of the ages, the masterpiece 

of God. The Christian life grows out of such a 



Christian Science and its Problems 

faith, as when the prodigal remembered that in 
his father's house there was abundanca He who 
realizes his divine ascent can no longer live in 
the far country. Thus it is the want of faith that 
benumbs, that stifles us ; we pause not to think 
of what we are, of the sublime potentialities 
stored within us, of our exalted origin and des- 
tiny. Were all this real rather than an empty com- 
monplace or an Arabian fiction ; were it a faith 
like that of Columbus in search of a new world, 
it would blight every evil thought in the bud. 

Guyau, in his Education and Heredity^ speaks 
thus of faith as a power in the right determina- 
tion of life : " "When we say to a (hypnotized) sub- 
ject, * You cannot move your arm,' we paralyze 
the motor current that sets the arm in motion. 
Hence I think we can establish the following law : 
Every manifestation of muscular or sensory ac- 
tivity does not take ejffect unless accompanied by 
a certain belief in oneself, or by the expectation 
of a determinate result, on the occurrence of cer- 
tain antecedent conditions. The consciousness 
of action is thus partly reduced to the belief that 
one is acting, and if this belief is destroyed, the 
consciousness itself becomes disorganized. All 
conscious life is based on a certain self-con- 
fidence. . . . Suggestion is the introduction 
within us of a practical belief which is spontane- 
ously realized ; the moral art of suggestion may, 


Christianity and Health 

therefore, be defined as the art of modifying an 
individual by persuading him that he is, or may be, 
other than he is. This art is one of the most im- 
portant appliances in education. All education, 
indeed, should be directed to this end to con- 
vince the child that he is capable of good and in- 
capable of evil, in order to render him actually so ; 
to persuade him that he has a strong will, in order 
to give him strength of will ; to make him believe 
that he is morally free and master of himself, in 
order that the idea of moral liberty may tend to 
progressively realize itself." Thus it is true in 
every part of our life that nothing palsies like 
doubt, nothing adds to our motor power like faith. 
Without faith in self the true end of life can 
never be attained. Vegetation only is possible, 
not health. 

Faith in man will keep before our minds the 
good in man ; we shall, therefore, think less of 
the bad. Familiarity with the images of evil is 
not conducive to physical well-being ; so far we 
agree with Christian Scienca Pictures of vice 
deprave the whole man. A perfect ideal before 
the mind sweetens the fountain of life, which will 
react gratefully on the whole body. Thus Christ 
becomes a source of health to us. He stands be- 
fore us the ideal of manhood ; communion with 
him is a vision of the good ; he brings us into 

touch with the best in man. To avoid evil we 


'••t- ■».■ 

Christian Science and its Problems 

need not shun men ; we may see them from the 
archetypal point of view ; we may interpret them 
mentally ; under the integument we may see the 
expanding Christ-life in our humanity. 

Faith in nature is the medium of communion 
with natura Thoreau knew the mysteries of the 
' i I woods because he had faith in natura For the 
t^ same reason John Burrows knows the birds. Liv- 
ing in close rooms is a violation of nature. Foul 
gases were not made for the lungs. In the open 
• fields, where sweet flowers bloom ; on the hillsides, 
' f\r among the rocks and trees, by the side of rippling 
*^j^^^ brooks and foaming cascades, where the warmth 
, and cheer of sunlight are spread on everything, 
; there is nature and there is health. He who has 
" ' faith in nature will often find her quiet nooks and 
" look through nature up to nature's God." Nor 
will God be far away. There is in nature what 
is known as the vis medicatrix naturce. It is the 
tendency of nature to health, the healing power 
of nature. Many diseases tend to recovery. Many 
" supernatural " cures are traceable to this power ; 
but because they are natural shall we, therefore, 
say it is not the work of God ? Much rather let 
us regard it as the immanent God thus manfest- 
ing his goodness who finds the faithful child of 
nature the most susceptible of his beneficent 
operations. Faith in nature opens the way to the 

vis medicatrix naturce, 


Christianity and Health 

Faith in Ood harmonizes life. To believe in 
the moral purpose running through all things, 
the ground of progress and ultimate perfection, 
is to discard pessimism and to lift up the head 
with undying couraga A true optimism builds 
up the red blood corpuscles. Life is a failure 
without hope; the body wanes under despair. 
Hope helps the physician's remedies, hastens con- 
valescence, wards off disease, and turns the atten- 
tion from self to a bright and cheerful f utura 

Faith, hope, love — this is Christianity's con- 
tribution to our physical welfare. In a large 
sense health starts from the spiritual center. 
Disease there means disease throughout the en- 
tire organism. A faithful, hopeful, loving spirit 
tends to obedience, courage, perseverance, pa- 
tience, cheerfulness — graces indispensable to 
health. Materialism has engulfed too many phy- 
sicians. They have little use for spirit; their 
dependence is drugs. To them life is a chemical 
product ; they deal with nothing that the scalpel 
does not disclose. Possibly Christian Science,} 
theosophy, and kindred movements are a nemesis 
visited on our neglect of spiritual realities and ; 
our practical denial of our universal relations, i 
Christianity has been too largely devoted to self - 
introspection, to unhealthy attention to states of 
feeling, to insuring for eternity without regard to 

time. Hence we have become sordid and earthy, 


Christian Science and its Problems 

the sorrows and ailments of the world have grown 
upon us, while the spirit of healing has been 

The Church as the head of Christianity ought 
to fill the nerve centers of the world with the 
power of the spiritual life and transfigure this 
material age with the glory of spirit Is it not 
true that " the law of life has been from the be- 
ginning the law of an increasing spiritualization 
of matter?" As Professor Smyth continues: 
"Life, in all its ascending power, beauty, and 
worth, has been a continual access of spirit to the 
creation. There is no profounder or more com- 
prehensive conception of evolution than that 
afforded by the law of the increasing fitness and 
service of the material to the spiritual." The 
mission of the Church is to accelerate this proc- 
ess, and failure at this point would unfit it to be 
the depository of the sublime teachings of Jesus 

A Chistian church ought to be a congregation 
of healthy minds. This should be one of the 
notes of the church. The atmosphere of its audi- 
torium should inspire normalcy of mind and 
body. The exalted themes of its pulpit, un- 
clouded by dark forebodings of the future and 
prophecy of defeat, should be filled with the 
beauty and sacrifice and perfection and victory 

of Christ From such a place one should go forth 


Christianity and Health 

with a soul full of aspiration and right impulses. 
Its pews should be coveted for the very sanity 
and buoyancy of the environment It ought to 
be the world's sanitarium, its influence conspiring 
with all of nature's curative processes. 

" Heal the sick " is Christ's command to the 
Church. Medical therapeutics touches only one 
side of the patient's need. Christianity must 
treat the ethical side. In the case of insanity, 
especially in its earlier stages, physicians encour- 
age the rational and mental power that still re- 
mains ; they seek to strengthen the will and the 
power of self-control. This is the side of man 
that Christianity should maintain in health. He 
who fails to realize sanity and harmony of life 
in the teachings of Jesus Christ misinterprets 
their spirit and their aim. Did not Christ give 
us the most exalted conception of man ? Was 
not every man in his sight of priceless value, and 
worthy to live his life at its best, even on the 
physical side ? It was his inspiration that founded 
the first hospital in the fourth century, an insti- 
tution that has come to stand for the true inter- 
pretation of Christ's command. For centuries 
the Church of Rome has joined the church and 
the hospital, and the Protestant world is now 
awaking to the duty it also owes in the relief of 
disease. The worth of man is a conception of 

this age that is affording the largest opportunity 


Christian Science and its Problems 

to every human being. Every obstacle must be 
removed ; twisted bones are straightened, poi- 
soned blood is cleansed, that a human being may 
have the largest possible chance to live the life of 
a man. 

Stbonq is the contrast between Christianity 
and Christian Science. There is little hope to a 
sin-sick world in a God who fades before the soul 
like the colors in the evening clouds ; in a mor- 
tal mind so "cribbed, cabined, and confined" 
that it has only the most attenuated views of 
life; in the negation of sin and the denial of r 
evil, two bold facts in human life ; in that per- \ 
version of truth that makes the cure of physical 
disease the key to spiritual harmony ; that re- , 
duces Christ to a doctor of the body ; that treats 1 
our human ailments by creating a mental delu- 
sion ; that, in brief, is only an American Bud- 

On the other hand, the old truth of the Gospel 
holds a more commanding place in the world to- 
day than ever in the past There is evil in the i 
world, but Christ has come to conquer it by | 
struggle, by sorrow, by death. He is not far 
separated from the world, but is immanent in 
human life, still struggling, suffering, dying, and 
rising again, and through this very ministry he 

is mediating the divine life to the world. God is 


Christianity and Health 

a person too infinite to be separate from an atom , 
of matter, and yet so transcendent that he cannot 
be measured by the sum of all things that exist ^ 
He made man a personality capable of reducing 
his very soul to chaos, or of cooperating with 
God in building a world, and hastening the op- 
erations of divine love and power. He has left 
man to work out his own salvation, a task that 
man is steadily accomplishing in the systematic 
methods of science. He has opened the world 
before us to be conquered by intelligence, a con- 
quest in which man is to rise into strength and 
moral beauty, into harmony and conmiunion 

with God. 



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. j 138*